Defending public services
Battles against privatisation and cuts
The TUC's Disabled Members' Committee has made this statement: Accessible public transport is essential for disabled people to participate in society on an equal and independent basis. To be genuinely accessible, public transport must be adequately staffed by workers with decent standards of training, pay, conditions and security of employment.
… and why it matters today
By Janine Booth, published in RMT News.
The two biggest employers in the east London borough of Poplar one hundred years were the railways and the docks. Our forerunner unions had plenty of members there. Their jobs involved long hours and low pay, but they were unionised, so they were fighting for, and winning, improvements.
Our public sewage industry
was sold to private bidders
Who don't dispose of putrid waste
but dump it in the rivers
They take responsibility
and flush it down the loo
For building up the affluent
builds effluence up too
The Tories' excremental sale
saw treatment work neglected
As income goes to bonuses
so beaches are infected
The Night Tube in London will resume on two lines from 27 November, in a move promoted as ensuring safety for women. However, the reality is more complex, and women’s safety requires increased Night Tube staffing.
Today (1 September 2021) is the centenary of the first arrests of Poplar's rebel councillors.
More about this auspicious occasion and its relevance today in my article on Labour Hub.
- a villanelle about this.
Kids needed somewhere safe to swim
so locals raised funds for a pool,
got sponsor forms and filled them in
Again they shook donation tins
to keep aquatics at the school,
to keep the children safe to swim
One hundred years ago, a big movement grew in the east London borough of Poplar, headed by thirty councillors who went to prison rather than levy extortionate rates or cut services to the working-class population that elected them. ‘Poplarism’ won.
Why did Poplar win? Here are ten key points, which contain lessons for today.