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Friday 25 November 2016

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Conference announced to debate TUSC's role now and the 2017 elections

The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) national steering committee has agreed the agenda for the TUSC conference to be held in London on January 28th.

The main conference session will be a forum under the heading, 'TUSC's role now and the 2017 elections', to explore how TUSC should operate in the welcome new political situation opened up by Jeremy Corbyn's leadership of the Labour Party.

This question has been debated constantly on the TUSC steering committee since Jeremy's first election victory in autumn 2015 and particularly since the defeat of the coup attempt by Labour's right-wing to unseat him this summer. Different positions have been put forward for consideration by the various components of the TUSC steering committee at our October and November meetings and we publish them here (see http://www.tusc.org.uk/txt/387.pdf) as background information for the debate which will continue at the TUSC conference.

The current position of TUSC remains as it has been since September 2015. Jeremy's leadership election victory on an anti-austerity message changed things compared to the first five years of TUSC's existence and our policy since then has been not to field candidates in local elections against Labour councillors who vote against cuts in the council chamber. Politicians of whatever party who support austerity, however, are another matter. But should that now be reviewed?

The forum will involve platform speakers from the three constituent organisations of TUSC - the RMT transport workers' union, the Socialist Party and the SWP - with plenty of opportunity for debate from the floor. The constituent organisations and local TUSC groups can also submit resolutions on this subject, to be received by Clive Heemskerk, the TUSC national agent, at [email protected] by Monday 16th January.

There will also be a conference session on TUSC's campaigning tasks in the battle against council cuts, as local authorities prepare to set their 2017-2018 budgets by the end of March.

Electing the Individual Members' reps on the steering committee

TUSC is a coalition with a national steering committee with representatives from its constituent organisations alongside leading trade unionists, sitting in a personal capacity. Other individual members of TUSC who are not members of a constituent organisation also have two places on the committee, elected by individual members at the TUSC conference.

If you want to stand as one of the Individual Members' reps on the TUSC steering committee please submit a maximum 250-word candidate statement to Clive Heemskerk, the TUSC national agent, at [email protected] - once again by Monday 16th January. The statements will be published on the TUSC website and distributed with ballot papers to all those registering at the conference who are not otherwise members of one of the constituent organisations. There will be a lunchtime meeting of Individual Members to conduct the election.

Conference registration

The conference is on Saturday 28th January from 11am to 4-30pm (registration from 10am) at Student Central, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HY.

There is a conference registration fee of £10 waged and £2 unwaged/low-waged. For a conference registration form go to http://www.tusc.org.uk/txt/386.doc

There will be capped pooled fare of £15 to not discourage attendance from outside London. This means that if your transport costs are more than £15 you can get the difference back (although please do what you can to keep costs down as any capped fare shortfall will comes from TUSC campaign funds). If your travel costs are less than £15 you will have to pay in the difference to the pooled fare.