TUSC Against Cuts
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More TUSC candidates in place as election challenge grows

Posted: 19 December 2014

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) national steering committee approved another tranche of parliamentary candidates at its December meeting. Along with the seven candidates agreed so far by the Scottish TUSC steering committee, there are now 32 TUSC candidates in place for next May.

The new round of TUSC parliamentary candidates approved included Tony Mulhearn, standing in Liverpool's Riverside constituency. Tony, one of the Liverpool 47 Labour councillors who defied the Thatcher government in the 1980s, polled 4,792 votes for TUSC in Liverpool's mayoral election in 2012, coming in ahead of both the Tories and UKIP. Also contesting a Liverpool parliamentary seat for TUSC is the Unite union convenor for the city council, Dave Walsh, standing in Liverpool Wavertree.

There are two trade union national executive committee (NEC) members in the new candidates' list, with the National Union of Teachers' (NUT) executive member Anne Lemon contesting Bristol North West, and Unison NEC member Jacqui Berry standing in Gillingham and Rainham. This north Kent constituency is next door to the Rochester and Strood seat of UKIP MP Mark Reckless - in May he will be challenged on behalf of TUSC by the local RMT branch Young Members Officer, Dan Burn.

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Media round-up: local coverage for TUSC candidates and a letter on Russell Brand

Posted: 30 October 2014

The selection of Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) prospective candidates for next year's elections has given local TUSC groups opportunities to get some media coverage in their area.

The Portsmouth News covered a 40-strong meeting, with national TUSC chair Dave Nellist in attendance, which announced the selection of candidates to contest the city's two parliamentary constituencies next May (see http://www.portsmouth.co.uk/news/local/party-picks-two-candidates-for-elections-in-may-1-6363224 ).

The prospective TUSC candidate for Portsmouth North is Jon Woods, president of Portsmouth Trades Council and chair of the council's UNISON branch. Portsmouth South will be fought for TUSC by the former RMT transport workers' union executive committee member, Sean Hoyle.

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'Working class people need political representation'

Posted: 25 June 2014

As part of a feature on building an alternative in the aftermath of the local and European elections (see http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-ce7d-There-must-be-more-to-politics-than-this ), the Morning Star this week carried a substantial article on the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition's recent local elections campaign, which we republish below:

The Trade Union and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) put together what it describes as the biggest left electoral challenge to the mainstream parties since the Communist Party in 1950.

It stood 559 candidates in the local elections and received 68,000 votes. It supported Southampton rebel Labour councillors Keith Morrell and Don Thomas, who were expelled from the Labour group for voting against council cuts and presenting an alternative budget.

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Senior union figures protest at media boycott of anti-austerity candidates

Posted: 21 May 2014

With hours to go until the polls open the national media boycott of the biggest left-of-Labour election challenge since world war two continues.

In the local council contests Labour and the Tories are standing in over 4,000 of the 4,216 seats up for election. The Liberal Democrats have fielded just under 3,000 candidates, UKIP over 2,000, and the Green Party 1,875. The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) has 560 candidates, 13% of the seats.

TUSC's presence on the ballot paper is not as big as the top five but it is indisputably ahead of the rest of the pack, with the next biggest parties being the BNP (106 candidates), the Christian Peoples Alliance (61), the Liberal Party (43), and the English Democrats (31). Yet TUSC's share of media coverage is no way commensurate with the number of candidates we are standing, even compared to these 'others'.

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Sheffield TUSC in head-to-head radio debate with establishment parties

Posted: 21 May 2014

On 15 May Sheffield TUSC Walkley ward candidate Chas Lockett took part in a live debate on BBC Radio Sheffield's Rony Robinson Show. You can listen to an extract from the programme where candidates from the Lab-Con-Lib Dem parties and TUSC (and UKIP and the Greens) debate whether councils can resist the cuts.

Click here to listen.

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Make a REAL difference - Vote TUSC on 22nd May

Posted: 15 May 2014

The TUSC broadcast they wouldn't show:

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Local news coverage round-up

TUSC opposition to waste plant covered in Derby Telegraph, 12.05.14

Posted: 13 May 2014

While the national media - with one or two exceptions - continues to consciously ignore TUSC's election campaign, there has been some decent coverage this week in the local press.

The Derby Telegraph led the way with a headline article, 'Derby TUSC election candidates: We'd rip up waste plant contract', highlighting the local TUSC candidates' pledge to do everything possible to stop a waste incinerator plant being built in the Sinfin area of the city (see http://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/Derby-TUSC-election-candidates-d-rip-waste-plant/story-21085286-detail/story.html )

The Telegraph article also pointed to TUSC's policy of standing "up to cuts by setting a council budget which 'meets the needs of the local community and means the government must make up the shortfall'. In the short-term, the party said it would use council reserves and borrowing to provide any cash needed to keep services". TUSC was attacked for its stance by both the Labour and Liberal Democrat group leaders, showing once again that the establishment parties are fundamentally the same.

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TUSC candidate Ted Woodley on BBC West Midlands

Posted: 11 May 2014

Ted Woodley ably demonstrated that Labour, Liberals and Tories are all the same when he appeared on the Adrian Goldberg radio show on 7 May 2014.

Click here to hear a couple of brief clips from the radio show in which the ideas of TUSC were discussed by the candidates of the six biggest parties. All except TUSC were in agreement that the cuts the current government demands must be carried out by local government, including UKIP and the Greens.

Ted explains clearly how Labour councils could lead a campaign to defy the government if they genuinely represented working people. TUSC, the sixth largest party contesting the elections, is the only party that clearly calls for opposition to austerity. The six largest parties contesting the local election are Labour, Tory and Liberal, UKIP, Greens and TUSC.

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The BBC's Daily Politics show covers TUSC's election launch

Posted: 9 May 2014

TUSC's local election launch on Friday May 9th was covered by the BBC, with a four minute interview with TUSC chairperson Dave Nellist on The Daily Politics - and a 20 second clip on the News at One.

Daily Politics

News at one

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TUSC election launch gets in The Independent

Independent newspaper 9 May 2014

Independent newspaper 9 May 2014

Posted: 9 May 2014

TUSC's local election campaign finally reached the national print media today with a short article in The Independent.

Under the heading, 'Crow's party to launch challenge to Labour', Andy McSmith reports on TUSC's 560-candidate challenge on May 22nd.

While he argues that TUSC is unlikely "to win more than a handful" of council seats this month and is "too small to represent a threat to Labour", he also says "that could change" in the future, as "Len McCluskey, head of the massive Unite union, has hinted it might break links with Labour" at some point.

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What is the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition?

TUSC sticker

TUSC sticker

Posted: 8 May 2014

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) was set-up in 2010 to enable trade unionists, community campaigners and socialists to stand candidates against the pro-austerity establishment parties.

It was co-founded by Bob Crow, the late general secretary of the RMT transport union, along with other prominent trade unionists and socialist organisations. TUSC is a coalition with a national steering committee which includes leading trade unionists from the RMT, the PCS civil servants union, the National Union of Teachers, the Fire Brigade Union and the Prison Officers Association.

The RMT's annual general meeting in 2012 agreed to officially support TUSC and have representation on the steering committee.

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More local news coverage for TUSC, but BBC downplays council elections

Salfod Star

Salfod Star

Posted: 5 May 2014

TUSC's campaign for the council elections taking place on May 22nd picked up more coverage this week in local news media.

The standout article was in the Salford Star (see http://www.salfordstar.com/article.asp?id=2253 ) which under the heading, 'Salford Labour Party to face huge anti-cuts electoral challenge', spoke of TUSC "mounting the biggest left challenge to Labour dominance, fielding candidates in nine of the twenty wards up for grabs". It also made the significant point that the Liberal Democrats, "once seen as the main opposition party in Salford", were fielding just two candidates this time.

A May Day election activity in Plymouth, where TUSC is standing candidates in all 19 of the city's wards, made the headlines in the Plymouth Herald (at http://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/Trade-unionist-coalition-hold-pre-election-rally/story-21055579-detail/story.html#ixzz30qO1e5MO ) with a good photo spread. Plymouth is another city where the Lib Dems' decline is on display, with the party contesting just four seats.

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TUSC candidates' launch in the local news

Liverpool Echo 27-4-14 Hillsborough heckler Roy Dixon to fight against cuts in local elections , photo Liverpool Echo

Liverpool Echo 27-4-14 Hillsborough heckler Roy Dixon to fight against cuts in local elections , photo Liverpool Echo

Posted: 28 April 2014

The announcement of the biggest left-of-Labour election challenge in 60 years has made the pages of local newspapers at least, since nominations closed on Friday.

Leading the way was the Liverpool Echo with the story that Roy Dixon, who they correctly describe as "the man whose heckle kick-started the process that led to the new Hillsborough inquests", is standing for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) in the city's Belle Vale ward (see http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/hillsborough-heckler-roy-dixon-stand-7038201 ).

Roy was the first person to heckle the Culture Secretary Andy Burnham at the twentieth anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster in 2009, which pushed the then Labour government into setting up a fresh review.

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TUSC protests in support of Doncaster Care UK workers

Care UK workers and supporters march in Doncaster after lobbying Ed Miliband's surgery

Care UK workers and supporters march in Doncaster after lobbying Ed Miliband's surgery

Posted: 25 April 2014

About 50 protesters attended the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) called Lobby of Ed Miliband's Doncaster North surgery on Thursday 24 April in support of the Care UK strike.

Alistair Tice, South Yorkshire

Around 30 Care UK workers were there, about a dozen of them went in to discuss with Ed Miliband. They said Miliband was supportive, didn't think Care UK should have been given the contract and was going to speak to Labour Mayor Ros Jones. But still Miliband won't publicly come out in support.

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Nationwide day of action in support of striking Care UK workers

Posted: 23 April 2014

Anti-cuts candidates standing in the local elections in May are protesting outside Care UK offices in support of striking workers in Doncaster on Thursday. The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) will be lobbying Ed Miliband's office in Doncaster as well as holding solidarity protests across the country.

Nurses and care workers at Care UK in Doncaster have taken 20 days of strike action against proposed 35% pay cuts. Care UK took over the service last year, which was previously run by the NHS, and has now torn up the TUPE transfer agreement. Workers are facing pay cuts of £300-£700 a month as well as cuts in holiday and sickness entitlements and enhanced payments for unsociable hours. New staff are being employed on £6.50 an hour.

The workers, members of the trade union Unison, have voted unanimously for a further two week strike next month.

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TUSC chair Dave Nellist interviewed on BBC2's Daily Politics show

Posted: 10 April 2014

TUSC chair Dave Nellist was interviewed on BBC2's Daily Politics show on 10 April by programme host Andrew Neil.

Dave said Labour, Liberal Democrats, Tories and UKIP have an "overarching agenda when it comes to austerity".

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TUSC election challenge reaches 349 candidates and counting

Posted: 27 March 2014

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) local election challenge has now reached 349 candidates, after another 98 applications to stand under the TUSC umbrella in May's local elections were approved this week by the national steering committee.

The number of councils where TUSC candidates will be fighting seats has now risen to 69, out of the 160 councils with elections in May. There are currently ten councils where TUSC will be standing in at least ten seats, and in Coventry and Portsmouth every seat will be contested, with nine RMT members coming forward as candidates in the later.

A full list of the candidates approved so far, broken down into regions and including this week's applications, can be found at www.tusc.org.uk/txt/289.pdf.

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Dave Nellist remembers Tony Benn

Tony Benn

Tony Benn

Posted: 14 March 2014

TUSC national chairperson, Dave Nellist, a Labour MP from 1983-1992, has issued the following tribute to Tony Benn, who so sadly passed away today.

"It is enormously saddening to mark the passing today of Tony Benn, a friend of forty years. He was a towering socialist.

"I first worked with Tony on the 1975 Common Market referendum; hundreds filled the Police Assembly Hall in Coventry to hear him speak, with hundreds more outside. He spoke for me at a 1987 general election rally, and hundreds came again to hear him in Coventry's Methodist Central Hall; as they did five years ago when he came back to do one of his 'fireside chats'.

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Dave Nellist speaks about Bob Crow's legacy on local radio

Posted: 14 March 2014

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition national chair Dave Nellist spoke to BBC Coventry and Warwickshire's Phil Upton about Bob Crow's legacy and his work in TUSC. Listen here.

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Bob Crow, TUSC steering committee member, 2010-14, in his own words

Bob Crow speaking in Waltham Forest, East London, during TUSC's 2012 GLA elections campaign, photo Senan

Posted: 12 March 2014

Bob Crow was a co-founder of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) from its very beginning in the run-up to the 2010 general election.

He sat on the TUSC national steering committee, initially in a personal capacity but, after the decision of the 2012 annual conference of the RMT transport workers union to be officially represented within TUSC, as one of the union's official nominees.

Yet obituaries in the mainstream media have completely ignored his role in TUSC, with the BBC's website typical in stating that "Mr Crow was not a member of any political party when he died".

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