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Tuesday 24 February 2015

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TUSC reaches Welsh broadcast threshold - now for England and Scotland

The latest parliamentary candidates approved by the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) national steering committee have taken TUSC past the threshold to qualify for a party election broadcast in Wales in May's general election.

The broadcasting authorities' criteria for what they call 'fair media coverage', including a TV broadcast, is that a party needs to stand candidates in one sixth of the seats up for election.

With the new candidates approved, headed by the Swansea branch secretary of the RMT transport workers union, Owen Herbert (a previous member of the union's national executive), TUSC will be standing in at least eight of the 40 seats in Wales.

The 'fair coverage' thresholds for England are 89 candidates and ten in Scotland. Scottish TUSC is holding a national meeting this weekend (see www.tusc.org.uk/events) which will see the threshold passed there (nine so far). In England the new approvals take the number of candidates to 78.

The candidates agreed this week include Kingsley Abrams, a former Labour councillor in Lambeth suspended for opposing cuts, and also a former national executive committee member of Unite. Kingsley has now resigned from the Labour Party and will stand for TUSC in Bermondsey & Old Southwark, where he was the Labour candidate in 2001.

Also approved as candidates this week were Joe Simpson, the Assistant General Secretary of the POA, standing in Enfield North, and the National Union of Teachers NEC member Pete Glover, contesting Bootle. There are now more national executive members of the NUT standing for TUSC in May's elections than there are for any other party.

A full list of the TUSC parliamentary candidates agreed so far can be found at www.tusc.org.uk/txt/322.pdf. And the list of council candidates approved so far can be found at www.tusc.org.uk/txt/323.pdf.

To be a TUSC candidate in May you need to complete a TUSC Candidate Authorisation Application form. Copies of the forms are available on the TUSC website at www.tusc.org.uk/candidates.php - there are different forms for parliamentary candidates and local council candidates.

To be considered in the next round of approvals, forms should be e-mailed to Clive Heemskerk, the TUSC National Election Agent, at cliveheemskerk@socialistparty.org.uk, by Friday 27th February, with those approved being posted up on the TUSC website the following week.