UK Workers' Movements Feature Archive
On the morning of Tuesday 26th February at 7:30am a group of Save Birmingham activists blockaded the entrance to the Council House underground car park. Later that day the annual budget meeting would take place where over £100m worth of cuts would be voted through. Save Birmingham, who had previously occupied the balcony of the Council House in the lead up to the budget meeting, along with other anti-cuts groups had called for a public blockade of the Council House at 11:00am to prevent the councillors from entering the building and voting through the cuts. When 11:00 arrived the car park blockaders were joined by hundreds of people from around Birmingham angry at the way the cuts are being undemocratically forced onto the city by the council. Soon all major entrances to the Council House had been blockaded just in time for the councillors to start arriving. Police tried to break up and force councillors through but eventually resorted to sneaking councillors into the Council House via secret doors in the Art Museum which is connected to the Council House. When the meeting finally got under-way activists twice managed to gain entry to the building to disrupt the meeting.
On the Newswire: Video of Blockaded: Birmingham Council House cuts meeting | Council House Blockaded | Photos from Birmingham Council House blockade | More photos of Council House Blockade | Council Have Voted Through £102m Cuts – Blockade & Demonstration Is Not The End | It’s Time To Shut The City Down – Day Of Action Against Council Cuts | Save Birmingham - Blockade the Council House
Previous features: Anti-Cuts protesters occupy Birmingham Council House
Links: Save Birmingham
At 1:30pm on Monday 4th February a group of 20 protesters from the Save Birmingham campaign walked into the Council House and occupied the balcony overlooking Victoria Square. The group had previously sent two letters to every councillor in Birmingham the last letter with over 200 signatures but with no response from the council. The Save Birmingham campaign has been steadily growing over the past few months, from rooms packed full of people opposed to the proposed cuts at several of the councils own consultations to a meeting of 175 people called by Communities Against the Cuts to organise a grass roots movement to fight back against the cuts. This led to the day of action on the 4th, the day the Labour Group who have a majority on the Council had a private meeting to agree on the £625m cuts to Birmingham which will be voted through at the budget meeting on 26th February. The day started with a small silent protest in Victoria Square outside the Council House, which was followed by the occupation of the Council House later in the afternoon. The balcony occupation lasted five hours and ended after more than 200 anti-cuts activists arrived in Victoria Square after marching from the Bullring.
On the Newswire: Save Birmingham March on the Council House - Don't let them vote through the cuts | Birmingham Council House Occupied | Photos from yesterdays Birmingham Council House Occupation and Demonstration | Birmingham Council House Balcony protest
Links: Save Birmingham
Saturday 8th December saw two separate days of action happening across the country. The first was the start of a week of action against the governments Workfare scheme. Workfare replaces jobs and undermines wages, this can be seen by Superdrug in Brighton not hiring any Christmas temps because they have free labour from the job centre. The Work Programme actually reduces your chances of finding a job, whilst the Mandatory Work Activity has had no effect on unemployment levels. Since 3rd December, disabled people can now be sent on time unlimited workfare placements. If they say no, their benefits will be cut to £28/week indefinitely. Unemployed people who refuse can have their job seekers allowance cut for up to 3 years.
The second day of action was against Starbucks tax avoidance. Starbucks have not paid any corporation tax in the past 3 years, and only £8.6m in the 14 years they’ve been trading in this country. Costa Coffee, whose turnover last year was £377m, just £21m less than Starbucks paid £15m in corporation tax.
On the newswire: Workfare’s Christmas Bonus For The Bosses | 100 people at #Sheffield @ukuncut #Starbucks Action | UK Uncut protest against tax dodgers Starbucks | Anti-Austerity Protest, Manchester Report and Pics | small determined workfare demo in holloway, london yesterday | islington starbucks ukuncut actions yesterday - report & pics 1 of 2 | islington starbucks ukuncut actions yesterday - report & pics 2 of 2 | Bath Anti-Starbucks Demo | Boycott Workfare day of action | Anti-Workfare Pickets Glasgow Report | Boycott Workfare Video | Starbucks action in Cambridge by UK Uncut
Previous Features: Workfare: Enslave us and we'll shut you down!
Saturday’s October 20th "March for a future that works" demonstration organised by the TUC saw over 150,000 out on the streets of London to protest the government's cuts and austerity measures. It's been almost a year since the TUC leadership tried to look like they were actively opposing the cuts and well over a year since the last big demo. The organisers sent out a somewhat mixed message by first calling for a general strike but then allowing Ed Miliband a platform to announce he'll carry on cutting where the Tories leave off if elected.
The demonstration also saw hundreds of black bloc and Boycott Workfare activists target Oxford Street stores that use workfare and tax avoidance, whilst DPAC activists successfully blockaded Park Lane.
On the Newswire: October 20: The view from Oxford Circus | #Oct20 150,000 on TUC demo PHOTOS | unions cuts march and london anti-workfare actions - pics & report | Oct20: we got work to do ... | March For A Future That Works
Previous Features: SchNEWS: One Strike and You're Out? | "You Can Shove Your Rubber Bullets Up Your Arse!": 'Total Policing' of N9 Demos | Anti-cuts protesters take over London | March 26th - All out against the cuts
The Conservative Party Conference came to Birmingham this week and was met with almost daily protests from angry plebs. But whilst the protests where going on outside, inside the class warfare was turned up a notch after it was announced that a further £10billion will be cut from welfare and that the government plan on scrapping workers rights in exchange for offering them "shares" by their employer. These rights such as protection from unlawful dismissal, flexible working time and maternity leave have been won by workers struggling hard over the past 100 years for a decent standard of living. To add salt to the wound, the announcement delivered by George Osborne came with the Orwellian Doublespeak "workers of the world unite". Well if that’s what he wants …
On the Newswire: Welcome The Tories To Birmingham | Lobby Tory Conference re Ballymurphy Massacre | Picket the Bigots - Tory Party Conference | Badger Cull Tory Conference | Hunt Saboteurs protest against badger cull at Tory Party Conference | Remploy Demonstration At Tory Party Conference – 8:30am Wednesday | Tory Conference Demo | Badger Cull Campaigners to Target Conservative Party Conference | Sacked Remploy Workers Demonstrate For Their Jobs
By now the glad tidings that ninety of her majesty's most loyal subjects were happy to celebrate 60 years of her reign by kipping under a bridge before a joyful thirteen hour shift of telling union-jack-sporting buffoons the way to the big river in the middle of London without being paid has been splashed all over the papers. But it's just the tip of the iceberg.
On the newswire: Liverpool Workfare Walk of Shame Occupies City Centre Exploiters| Mayday workfare demo shuts Oxford Street stores| Workfare actions around Birmingham in April| Workfare conference cancelled due to protest | Workfare Unravels | 'It's exploitation and it's repellent' | Tesco’s Secret Workfare Slaves | Demo shuts Westminster Tesco | GMB Union Promotes Workfare as Answer | DWP Locks Down FOI Responses | Legal Challenge to Government’s slave labour scheme
From Corporate Watch: Benefit claimant forced to accept Jubilee steward position for less than minimum wage | To pay or not to pay: Asda and Argos choose workfare over work | Regulating workfare (or not)| 'It's exploitation and it's repellent': Retailers, councils and charities benefiting from workfare | Unemployed people bullied into work
Protests took place outside stores across Britain on 3rd March 2012 as campaigners stepped up their opposition to the ConDem workfare slavery scheme, (started under Labour,) by taking the online campaigns, which have resulted in many firms pulling out, onto the streets .
In Edinburgh two Tescos were 'invaded' and pickets were mounted outside a Poundland and British Heart Foundation store. The Edinburgh Coalition Against Poverty delivered a letter to the BHF store insisting “that BHF withdraws completely from the Work Programme and all workfare schemes”
Bristol cops arrested two protestors at a picket of a McDonalds, and a solidarity action was held outside Trinity Road cop-shop later in the day. In Birmingham about 50 campaigners stopped off at Sainsburies and Superdrug to congratulate them on pulling out the scheme, whilst pickets were held at Poundland and McDonalds. In Sheffield campaigners who were chucked out of a Tesco on West Street, continued their tour with visits to stores which included Marks and Spencers, McDonalds and Primark. Nottingham campaigners picketed Wilkinsons before moving on to other stores
In Lewisham, McDonalds, Boots, Greggs, BHS and Primark werre targeted by a group of about 30, whilst Oxford Street saw a few dozen campaigners target outlets including McDonalds, Pizza Hut and Holiday Inn in a game of cat and mouse awith the police. On Friday Ian Duncan-Smith was challenged by protestors as he arrived at a conference in Tottenham. He insisted that "workfare is a brilliant scheme".
Newswire: Workfare conference cancelled due to protest | Workfare Unravels | 'It's exploitation and it's repellent' | Tesco’s Secret Workfare Slaves | Demo shuts Westminster Tesco | GMB Union Promotes Workfare as Answer | DWP Locks Down FOI Responses | Legal Challenge to Government’s slave labour scheme
On 4th Feburary 2012 Sheffield Pizza Hut Workers Union, part of the IWW, held a protest outside Pizza Hut in Crookes, Sheffield over their ongoing dispute over workers terms and conditions. Solidarity potests were held in Brighton, Bradford, Glasgow, London, Birmingham, Bristol [1, 2], Hull, Liverpool, Calais, Portland, Vancouver and Berlin.
The dispute centers on several specifics aspect of the workers terms and conditions, pay for working on bank holidays, mileage rates and also recognition of the union. Whilst it has been standard practice to pay workers an enhanced rate for working bank holidays, Pizza Hut has decided that it will only pay the standard rate. Delivery drivers who use their own vehicles are given an allowance of 60p per delivery, a static rate which has remained unchanged for several years despite the soaring cost of fuel. Furthermore, "The Pizza Hut Workers Union also has concerns outside of this dispute, including delivery staffs safety gear, a decreasing pay packet that falls behind inflation and a demand for a real living wage for all Pizza Hut workers."
Newswire: Pizza Hut Workers Demand A Proper Slice | Solidarity Picket Glasgow With IWW Pizza Hut Workers Report | London Wobs' Solidarity Picket with IWW Pizza Hut | Pizza Hut Solidarity in Bradford | SchNEWS: Gimme A Slice OF The Action | Pizza Hut solidarity in Brighton | Solidarity Picket in Bristol with IWW Pizza Hut Workers | Birmingham IWW Solidarity Picket with IWW Pizza Hut Union
Wednesdays N30 strike was the biggest strike since the general strike of 1926 with 2 million public sector workers taking part and thousands marching on demonstrations across the country. In Birmingham 15,000 marched through the city centre with hundreds more on picket lines and rally's throughout the city.
Birmingham City council had tried to sabotage the event by demanding the organisers pay over £8,000 to cover costs despite only charging a few hundred for previous demonstrations. The march went ahead anyway with up to 15,000 public sector workers taking to the streets. They were joined by students, the unemployed and protesters from Occupy Birmingham whose camp is located near the end point of the march. The march started in Lionel Street Car Park went past St Philip's Cathedral, down Corporation Street and past New St Station and the Mailbox before ended at the NIA where there was a series of speeches.
On the newswire: Video: N30 Birmingham demonstration | Photos: Part 1 | Part 2 | Nov-30 Brum Strike and Protest | Reports: Stirchley and Cotteridge Against the Cuts N30 Report | Birmingham City Council tries to sabotage N30 demo | Wednesday's Strike Is About More Than Pensions and Cuts | N30 List of Pickets, Demonstrations and Rallies
Wednesday's N30 strikes saw 2 million public sector workers striking and hundreds of thousands marching in Britain's streets all over the country, marking the biggest strike in a generation.
Demonstrations and pickets were held in nearly every major town across the UK, with the largest gatherings seeing 30,000 in London, 20,000 in Manchester, 15,000 in Birmingham and 10,000 in Edinburgh and Glasgow. More than 6 out of 10 schools were closed for the day and some activists from Occupy London stormed the offices of the UK's highest paid CEO, Mick Davis, head of Xstrata mining corporation. Reports are of 75 arrests in total, most of them around the occupation of the Xstrata office and in Hackney, after some demonstrators were kettled for four hours, then taken into custody on 'suspicion of breach of the peace'. [More]
From the Newswires: Link to Video | Birmingham: Video | Brum Strike and Protest | Photos 1 | Photos 2 | Stirchley and Cotteridge report | Nottingham: Feature | NUJ discuss BBC cuts | The march | The speeches | Ready to march | Prof Samir Amin at N30 | N30 critical mass | More on Critical Mass | | County Hall picket | N30 march | London: Cop punches protester in face | Report and audio from pickets and march | Undercover cop spotted | banners at #N30 | Dalston 37 re-arrested | Hackney arrests update | N30 Photos | Occupy lsx march | Occupy lsx N30 report | My Day Out on Strike | Fuck total policing | Photos | N30 in Brixton | Shut the City | Banner drop | London feature | Riot cops at Peckham social centre | Panton House occupation | Storming of Panton House | Panton House arrests | Occupy lsx on Panton House action | Video link | Aberdeen: N30 Big Breakfast | Wrexham: N30 in Wrexham | Report and photos | Sheffield: N30 strike action | Occupation solidarity statement | Photos from the Strike Rally | Picket line anthems | Occupation | Oldham:: Morning of N30 | March and rally | St. Andrews: N30 action | Anarchist bloc | Bristol: Huge turnout | Santa arrested | More on the santa attack | Swindon: 1000 march | Oxford: My march | What a brilliant day! | West Yorkshire: Solfed report | Newcastle: March | Brighton: 6,000 march | Cambridge: Thousands take to streets | Milton Keynes: Photo | Photos and video | Herefordshire: Report
Strike analysis and announcements: But how could we win? | Major success | Anarchist Federation Analysis | Message for the Chancellor | N30 Strike Bristol | N30 Strike Notts | Gabber Solidarity Sounds | N30 in the North-west | Jeremy Clarkson's comments | Responses to Clarkson
Students and construction workers got their first taste of the 'Total Policing' advocated by new Met Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe at the demonstrations held on November 9th in London.
The MET used intimidatory tactics on Student demonstrators, in the run-up to the day, with threatening letters being sent out to those arrested at previous demos, along with threats of rubber bullets broadcast via the corporate media.
The MET tactics appeared to have some success with numbers on the demo much lower than expected. Those that did join found that the whole march took place in an enormous kettle, which they were unable to leave, with all side roads blocked off, and police in riot gear at junctions. In addition to the thousands of uniformed cops controlling the route, plain clothes cops infiltrated the crowd, making an aggressive arrest.
The corporate media continued to mainly ignore the demos organised by the 'Sparks' and UNITE, for construction workers who are under threat from massive pay cuts as their employers ditch pay agreements. Sparks who wished to show solidarity with the Students, were prevented from doing so and found themselves kettled later in the afternoon.
Elsewhere in London, RMT affiliated cabbies brought Trafalgar Square and the Strand to a standstill, and UK Uncut disrupted the speech of the Permanent Secretary for Tax of HM Customs and Revenue at a Corporate Tax Conference
Previous Feature: Sparks Will Fly on November 9th!
On the Newswire: Authorities panicking over November 9 protest! | Police harass activists traveling by coach to nov9 protests | a few pics and words on november 9 student protest | Nov9 The final kettle, arrests and dispersal | Cabbies Protest
Video: Nov9 Sparks push through police lines | #Nov9 Arrest of protester by undercover police | Violent arrest of a protester during #Nov9 by a large group of undercover cops
Plainclothes Cops: N9: Pics of moment undercover cops arrest protester | N9 arrest figures from Met police | Undercover Cop Faces at N9 | N9 new police tactics: Undercover cops active and aggressive
Analysis: After Nov 9: Where do we go from here? | N9: The Bigger Picture
Fat Cat bosses from the eight largest construction businesses are seekingto further expand profit margins through moves that would see industry workers lose up to a third of their take home pay. The employers seek to withdraw from various agreements including the Joint Industrial Board (J.I.B.) agreement, and to impose new contracts which would downgrade safety and skill levels. Earlier this month, Balfour Beatty issued 1700 termination notices to workers, and began sacking those who took part in protests and refused to cross picket lines.
Rank and file electricians, calling themselves 'The Sparks' have challenged both their employers and the UNITE union by launching their own wildcat actions whilst remaining in the union. London actions to date include two blockades of Blackfriars station construction site, a picket outside Stratford's new Westfield Shopping Centre and most recently an attempt to blockade 110 Cannon Street, a site run by Gratte Brothers. On arrival the Sparks found that management had already closed the site, and headed for Cannon Street Tube where they held a short rally before marching to the #OccupyLSX camp outside St. Pauls. Outside of London actions have taken place at Sellafield, Grangemouth and Ratcliffe power stations, and Lindsey oil refinery.
Next Wednesday the Sparks will be joined by plumbers, and heating and ventilation engineers from across the country. They plan to assemble at the Shard near London Bridge at 11.30am before marching to the Blackfriars Station site and then on to parliament.
Also taking place on the day, will be the national demonstration against fees, cuts and privatisation which will bring together university, further education and school students from across the country to stage the biggest education protest in the capital since last December. Also planned is a mass walkout of schools, FE colleges and universities by students in support of the demo. The “March on the City” will see thousands descending on the streets of London, starting at the University of London Union, Malet Street through Trafalgar Square and up the Strand, before passing #OccupyLSX camp outside St. Pauls and ending at London Metropolitan University Moorgate campus next to the City of London, the heart of the financial capital. The day of protest is aimed at the government’s education reform bill which is a crude attempt to corporatise the education sector.
On the newswire: Sparks blockade Blackfriars station site | Siteworkers and OccupyLSX blockade Blackfriars | Latest London sparks protest | Electricians/Sparks Protest in Newcastle | Proposed Electricians Pay Cut Sparks Resistance | Manchester support the Sparks! | National Construction Industry action Nov 9th
On June 30th thousands of strikers and their supporters gathered in Sheffield for a protest against the governments cuts to public sector pensions and public sector cuts in general. following a rally in Barkers Pool there was a short march down the Moor and back up to Division Street and back to Barkers Pool for a second rally.
Earlier in the day there was a Sheffield Uncut action and there is a Uncut - 'Teach In' planned for Saturday 2nd July, 12pm, City Hall steps.
Read full article for a round-up of J30 action: a day of protest against pension cuts and more
See also regional features (links below) and the J30 topic.
On June 30th over 800,000 public sector workers will be on strike against attacks on their pensions. This is a key fight for everyone who wants to defend public services and oppose cuts to pensions, benefits services and our communities. Strikers and anti-cuts campaigners from across South Yorkshire will be marching through Sheffield, please join them.
Thu 30 Jun 2011, 12 noon assemble at Peace Gardens; 1pm rally Barkers Pool, organised by Sheffield Anti-Cuts Alliance, supported by Sheffield Trades Council.
Other protests listed on j30strike.org are, a student march around the pickets, meet on Howard Street (Sheffield Hallam Uni main entrance) at 9am and Sheffield Uncut action, meet at tram stop outside the Cathedral at 10am.
As mass protests in Madrid raise the bar for European anti-austerity actions. We've got the Arab Spring – what about a European summer? It's a week since thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators pitched up in central Madrid (see SchNEWS 772) - and revolution fever is spreading across Europe like nits in a playground. With the Spanish sit-in still going strong – and intending to remain until at least the 29th - street demonstrations have also hit Greece, Georgia, and, er, Bristol. Protests are spreading to Italy, France, Portugal, Austria even Germany - could it be that last year's initial protests against austerity measures are maturing, one year on, into a broader demand for political reform?
From the newswires:
Crackdown begins. | Nottingham Solidarity | Spanish Revolution at London | #Spanishrevolution Has Reached Bristol | This revolution is sponsored by you! | Protests continue outside Spanish embassy | A shout from Spain | Message from Barcelona | Edinburgh Solidarity March
In SchNEWS: SchNEWS 773
With future May Days under threat, policing in the build up to this May Day has been particularly pernicious. Operations were mounted against social centres, projects and activists as the MET and other forces engaged in a series of pre-emptive arrests. In London raids took place at the Rat Star Social Centre, Offmarket Social Centre, nearby Petrosiege and The Community Project in Sipson (Grow Heathrow). The Met were also involved in raids on squats in Brighton, and Telepathic Heights in Bristol - where a police raid caused last week’s Battle of Stokes Croft - was evicted, causing further disturbances. Indymedia reported that an arrest was made in Cambridge and one in Edinburgh after groups and individuals were raided in Scotland in relation to March 26.
On the newswires:
Police Raids on social centres and projects: London 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Brighton 1 | 2 | Bristol 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | Fitwatch analysis |
May Day: Event Announcements Glasgow | Brighton 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | Bristol | London 1 | 2 | 3 |
May Day Reports and Repression: Birmingham | Birmingham photos | Birmingham action against banks | Newcastle | Brighton | Leeds | London | Nottingham 1 | 2 | Cambridge | Oxford | Roundup of northern Mayday events | Reports from around the world: Spain photos | Ukraine | Russia photos | Berlin photos |
Royal Wedding: Repression 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | Identify these thugs | Announcements London | Newcastle | Bristol and Bath | Reports London | Oxford | Manchester | Sheffield | Newcastle | Analysis 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
Yesterday’s March 26th ‘March for the Alternatives’ saw over 500,000 protest against Con-Dem governments’ neo-liberal austerity measures. The direct action on the streets of central London was also unprecedented in terms of scale and rage. The police were outrun on the streets, with their media spokesperson forced to concede that it is impossible to protect every business in the capital. Those businesses that were affected by actions were either linked to tax-evasion, or were symbols of affluence and privilege.
The compromised TUC leadership speaks in the same tone as the police and corporate media when it denounces direct action. In reality there was a palpable show of class solidarity between rank and file trade unionists, anti-cuts activists and black bloc-ers.
Over 200 arrests were reported and this number can be expected to grow as police review footage from the day and mount raids.
From the Newswire: Roundup of events | Timeline | Serious Violence by police at protest party | Putting In The Ritz | What Now After The TUC's London Demo? | Letter to UK Uncutters from the 'violent minority' | New Police Tactics
Photos:1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |
Videos: Global corporations | Symbols of decadence | | Banks | Black Bloc walking down Regent Street | Cop Vans Retreating |
March 26 looks set to be the biggest street mobilisation in Britain since the anti-war march of 2003, with hundreds of thousands likely to join the TUC's "March for the Alternative". As the Con-Dem government escalates the class war with its cuts package, and following the rebellious creativity of the recent student protests, not to mention the uprisings sweeping the Arab world, will the crowd be content just to obey the TUC leaders and march from A to B? Following several calls to turn it into a day of real action against the government and the economy [NetworkX | Rallying Call | UK Ungoverned], various groups have announced plans including feeder marches, blockades and more. In particular, occupations should be a key theme as UKuncut plan to take over Oxford Street and another secret target, and others call to "Occupy Everything". Will this be the turning point where the energy and rage seen on the streets this winter spreads beyond the youth to workers and all who will stand and fight? Read more...
Arrest BUST card: GREEN AND BLACK CROSS BUST CARD (pdf)| Don't let the cops trample on you or your rights! | LDMG Bustcard (pdf) | No Comment The Defendants Guide to Arrest | prepare for Saturday - Guide to Public Order Situations
Security Concerns over Social Media and Protest: Will Sukey Keep Us Safe? … Leaked Minutes Reveal Cosy Chats With Met | Met Police to use Bluetooth for #M26 Public Order
TUC Info | Events listing + links | Freedom March 26th Action Map | How to break out of a kettle on March 26th | Resist26 | Indymedia calendar | Legal: GBC Arrestee Support 07946 541511 see also LDMG | Indymedia reporting, Alt media + Live info
Following the protests on the first day of the Liberal Democrat Spring Conference in Sheffield the second day saw 5,000 protesters gathering on Devonshire Green and marching to Barkers Pool outside the City Hall. Direct action against tax dodging corporations involved protest parties in Top Shop, Boots on Fargate and Nat West Bank on High Street [video].
A convergence space that was used on Friday night, a vacant shop next door to Debenhams on The Moor has now been opened as the 0742 Club and is appealing for people to get involved as residents [photos]. There are plans for art exhibitions, music nights, film screenings, workshops, talks and much more, there is a meeting to discuss future of the building on Tuesday at 5pm and and a workshop / talk on land reclaim, common law, and setting up eco communities on Friday, March 18th.
The first day of the Liberal Conference in Sheffield was met by protests [ 1 | 2 | 3 ] outside the Town Hall starting at around 4pm. At around 4:45pm the protest moved up to Barkers Pool and proceeded to chant at the conference delegates outside the City Hall. The protest then moved to the top of Barkers Pool, at the bottom of Division Street and got noisier. A critical mass later in the evening brought Ecclesall Road to a complete standstill. The Star reported that there were 800 protestors and has posted a video and a timeline of the protest.
A far bigger protest is expected tomorrow, assembling at 11am on Devonshire Green, however a warning that it might be kettled there has led to a call to meet outside the Town Hall instead. See the Massive Protests Expected at the Liberal Democrats Spring Conference in Sheffield feature article for more details
Conference tweets are using #ldconf, so use this hashtag in titles of newswire reports to get the delegates attention, you can also follow the Sheffield Indymedia newswire via Twitter or indy.im and also ConDem Sheffield on indy.im
Newswire: Convergence Centre Open in Sheffield | so this is what 2 million quid of policing looks like - day 1 | Photos from the protest, 11th March, Sheffield city centre | Protests at the First Day of the Liberal Democrat Conference | Liberal Democrat Conference: Police State Sheffield
On 4th March, in the face of a trade union protest (audio) councillors voted for a package of £84 million of cuts in services and 273 redundancies. The Star has reported that "Lib Dems had their proposals approved after the opposition Labour group declined to put forward alternative plans, which could have been passed with support of the two Greens and [the] lone independent". The Sheffield Green Party reports that "The Lib Dem budget was passed because Labour refused to vote against the cuts. The Green Party Councillors were the only ones to vote against the cuts". The budget documents can be found on the Council web site.
For past coverage of the protests against the Liberal Democrat / Conservative cuts see the Sheffield Public Sector Cuts archive.
Egyptian dissidents (along with the masses) celebrated on Friday as Hosni Mubarak finally threw in the towel after the mass protests in Cairo's Tahrir Square, and across the country, refused to abate (and presumably the Americans finally ordered him to load up the plane with gold and go in an attempt to ensure the power structures – and thus their influence – didn't collapse completely). But the Egyptian revolution is not yet won as the military have stepped in, repressed protest and threatened to declare martial law.
Over 50,000 students traveled to London from around the UK today, Wednesday November 10th. Marchers congregated in Horse Guards Avenue in Central London before marching past Westminster and the Houses of Parliament to Millbank. From there, it was just a short distance to the Tory Headquarters at 30 Millbank, where protesters made their feelings known (Rooftop occupation).
The demonstration had been called by the National Union of Students and the University and Colleges Union, and comes a week after a similar demonstration attended by 25,000 people in Dublin, Ireland (Interviews with students on the Irish march).
Reports and photos from the newswire: Pictures From Student Demo | Millbank Occupied as 50,000 Protest Education Cuts | student cuts demo - pics from parliament square | “Tory Scum, Education is a Right”… | Nick Clegg cancels visit to Oxford | Students march against cuts, occupy Conservative Party HQ | First hand reports from the storming of the Tory Scum HQ | Press Release: Anarchist Federation | Students Show the Way – Honours All Round for the Millbank Protesters | Millbank – what happened, and how can we build on it?
Video: The Siege Of MillbankAutonomous Students Network | Publish your reports of today's demo | London Indymedia 'Tumblewire']
Oxford's anti-cuts campaign, a network of service users, unions and student groups, rapidly mobilised an escalating succession of protests in the last two weeks against the planned demolition of the welfare state by the ConDem government.
About 200 people rallied during a day of action against the cuts in Bonn Square on 20th Oct, coinciding with the release of the Comprehensive Spending Review. There were speeches and several people gave us their reactions to the cuts. That same morning, activists dropped a banner on Carfax Tower.
The Oxford Education Campaign, a group of hundreds of Oxford and Oxford Brookes students mobilising independently of their student unions, organised over 1000 protesters to march on the day of Vince Cable’s (Government Business Secretary) scheduled visit (28th Oct). Vince Cable embarrassingly cancelled his talk, but the march occurred as planned and police cordons were broken several times.
Within 48 hours of the education march, the local Vodafone shop on Cornmarket was taken over by 30 protesters as part of a national action against the company, in which over 21 shops were occupied around the UK, for its widely reported £6bn tax evasion.
Throughout the month, the Oxford Save Our Services campaign spoke to the BBC, ITV, and others about the prospect of losing their services. SOS also leafleted in central and East Oxford and engaged with the community about the cuts.
- The National Union of Students will march in London on 10th Nov. Over 7000 students and supporters from around the country are expected to attend.
- The Oxfordshire Anti-Cuts Alliance has called a meeting on 16th Nov, "United Against the Cuts" at Oxford Town Hall at 7.30pm.
- Nick Clegg will be in town on 17th Nov, to speak at the Oxford Union; if he doesn’t cancel then his presence is likely to galvanise thousands of activists in the region.
[ Bonn Sq rally: 1 | 2 | 3 | demotix ] [ banner drop ] [ education demo: 1 | 2 | 3 elsewhere: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ]
[ vodafone demo: 1 | 2 | elsewhere ] [ Save Our Services | Oxford Education Campaign | UK Uncut ]
Thousands have marched, a government department has been broken into, and a Scottish branch of Lloyds TSB has been occupied by pissed-off pensioners...It must be the (OK, somewhat quiet compared to France) start of the anti-cuts revolt!
On Sunday 3rd October the Tory Party Conference begins in Birmingham. The Right to Work Campaign which is supported by a variety of trade union groups has called a national mobilisation against the conference. An autonomous direct action bloc was soon announced by a group known as No CPC who have posted a comprehensive list of venue targets.
Various possibilities to disrupt fringe events have also been announced, Class War have called for people to cheer their team on at the Tory Party Conference 'pub quiz' taking place in the evening of the mobilisation, and CPC have now announced a Reclaim the Streets Party.
On Tuesday 24th August a delegation from the Right To Work campaign met with West Midlands police to discuss the route of the organised protest march outside the Tory party conference on Sunday 3rd October. West Midlands police stated that they were happy for RtW to march past the conference centre and confirmed that centenary square, the square directly in front of the conference centre, would not be a “sterile zone”. Not surprisingly, on 2nd September the police reneged on the proposed route citing 'security reasons'..
Opposition to the planned public sector spending cuts is growing across Oxfordshire and beyond.
In early September there was a sit-in protest in Lloyds Bank in central Oxford. Protesters pointed out that the banks are being funded by the public at the expense of our frontline services including heath care, social services, and housing.
A week later, Oxford Save Our Services held a public meeting to start mapping the cuts in Oxfordshire and to start building resistance to them. Around 50 people - including service users and public sector workers whose jobs could be under threat - all spoke about the cuts that were being made. These ranged from closing the GAP homeless project, stopping schools & parks projects, closing care centres, turning off speed cameras, and much more.
Resistance to the cuts is in fairly early stages, but rapidly gathering momentum. Events coming up in the near future include:
23 September 7pm: Town Hall Oxford Trades Council open community meeting for all groups and unions against the cuts.
27 September: Oxford Save Our Services planning meeting. Update: Meeting details.
3 October: Demonstration at the Tory party conference. Coaches going from Oxford.
20 October (day of the Comprehensive Spending Review): National day of action against the cuts.
Welcome to the age of austerity. Romania has erupted in protests as harsh measures continue to grow and waves of discontent flood Europe.
Romania's capital, Bucharest, stood still for a day on Wednesday (19th) as ferocious cuts cripple the Romanian populace. The city was at brought to a halt as an estimated 50,000 protesters marched through the streets in the largest of the demonstrations seen since the cuts were announced. Protesters poured in from all over the country to attend, despite police attempts to block the streets to uphold order.