Press Release: Bournemouth Uncut brands Poole Council leader Elaine Atkinson’s comments as “shameless”.

Bournemouth Uncut For immediate release: 29/04/2013

Elaine Atkinson of Poole Council was questioned about the recent Bournemouth Uncut ‘Who wants to evict a millionaire’ action during her interview on the Sunday Politics South [1] show her response was:
“I mean, it was awful, it was an awful attack on local democracy, because these councillors are ordinary people who are giving up their time to do a job and help to their local communities, and frankly Bournemouth Uncut I have to say they are intelligent, they are articulate, they are organised, go and get a job.”

All Bournemouth Uncut actions are held on a Saturday or bank holidays. This is because the overwhelming majority of people that organise or come to our actions are employed full time. For Atkinson to use her platform to promote the myth that all protesters are unemployed, without any evidence of the group she is subjecting to these claims is utterly shameless. This shows how little she is in touch with the local electorate. Bournemouth Uncut is open to anyone who wants to join us, our turn out has been made up of a very wide range of professions, higher education students and those in-between jobs.

Kim Elkin of Bournemouth Uncut is currently volunteering at the Soup Kitchen at St Johns Church in Parkstone, she said “We care very much about our community and the people in it. That is why we do what we do. We don’t just protest against the cuts, we go out and help the people directly affected by them as well. Bournemouth Uncut is a fun, creative and family friendly way to engage with the public, and it shows people that there are alternatives to austerity. It doesn’t have to be this way. The bankers that got us into this mess are receiving tax breaks, and avoiding tax, while the poor are suffering for the mistakes of the rich.”

Atkinson claimed “councillors are ordinary people who are giving up their time to do a job and help to their communities“ In reality Elaine picked up £32,095 in the period 1st April 2011 – 31st March 2012[4] for giving up her time to Poole Council. She is in fact the highest paid councillor in Poole. Bournemouth Uncut will continue to do their day jobs and help their communities for free in addition to taking creative direct action in their spare time.

589 households in Bournemouth affected by bedroom tax[2] and 635 households affected in Poole.[3] That’s 1224 vulnerable social housing households affected. How many of these households will be able to move to a house with the correct amount of bedrooms? How many will find that the houses just aren’t available and have to pay the tax? How many will be pushed into more expensive rented homes, wasting more tax payer money? Do you know Elaine? We would love to know the figures. So far we have seen no guarantee given by Bournemouth or Poole borough councils to its social tenants that they will not be evicted if they fall behind on rent arrears because of the ‘bedroom tax’. Other councils in the country have given such assurances, but neither Bournemouth nor Poole borough councils have.

When the traditional routes of engagement with MP’s and councilors has been exhausted, and people’s concerns and issues have not been adequately dealt with, then yes, people turn to protest and direct action to get their voices heard, it is a healthy part of living in a democracy. To say that it was an attack on local democracy is ironic to say the very least.

Bournemouth Uncut is part of UK Uncut a grassroots movement using creative direct action to fight the cuts and highlight alternatives to austerity.

###ENDS###

For more information and interviews:
Email: BournemouthUncut@riseup.net

Call 07596 388 848

[1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01rxx34/Sunday_Politics_South_28_04_2013/
[2] https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/total_households_affected_by_bed_2
[3] https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/total_households_affected_by_bed
[4] http://www.boroughofpoole.com/your-council/councillors/members-allowances/?locale=en

To the streets for May Day 2013

Bristol First of May Group

Update: Facebook Event

This year Bristol Trades Council is pulling out all the stops and attempting to throw their biggest May Day March in years.  Whilst they may not have said it themselves, we’d like to think the effort of everyone who got involved with the 1st of May Group last year and the success of our demos, actions, and saturday march is what inspired them!

We have a lot of respect for trade unions, their members have been at the forefront of many working class struggles for almost as long as their has been a working class.  Despite the repression of the 1970s unions still hold a lot of potential for helping to organise mass action.

However far too often they are held back by the bureaucrats at the top who have lost touch with the rank and file militants pushing for more action. Mainstream unions can find themselves caught…

View original post 405 more words

Why we celebrate May Day.

The ‘Haymarket Affair’, Chicago Martyrs, ‘bomb throwing anarchists’ and the fight for the eight-hour working day.

In 1887 four Chicago anarchists were executed. A fifth cheated the hangman by killing himself in prison. Three more were to spend 6 years in prison until pardoned by Governor Altgeld who said the trial that convicted them was characterised by “hysteria, packed juries and a biased judge”. The state had, in the words of the prosecution put “Anarchy.. on trial” and hoped their deaths would also be the death of the anarchist idea… Read the full story on Libcom.

Haymarket martyrs

Oscar Neebe not shown received 15 years.

There was never any pretence of proving their guilt, then as now, working class self-organisation was treated as a menace, to be eliminated by fair means or foul.

“We are all creatures of circumstance; we are what we have been made to be. This truth is becoming clearer day by day …

… My children — well, their father had better die in the endeavor to secure their liberty and happiness than live contented in a society which condemns nine-tenths of its children to a life of wage-slavery and poverty.” – Albert to Lucy Parsons, in his final letter.

So what’s changed?

Adolph Fischer, Albert Parsons, August Spies, George Engel, Louis Lingg, Michael Schwab, Oscar Neebe, and Samuel Fielden are brought back to life every May Day by the actions of militant workers across the world. (And not a fucking tank in sight!)

“If you think that by hanging us you can stamp out the labour movement… the movement from which the downtrodden millions, the millions who toil in misery and want, expect salvation – if this is your opinion, then hang us! Here you will tread on a spark, but there and there, behind you – and in front of you, and everywhere, flames blaze up. It is a subterranean fire. You cannot put it out”. – August Spies.

Take to the streets this May Day! What are you waiting for?

The Anarchist origins of May Day  – a leaflet by the Workers Solidarity Movement (pdf)

1erMayo

Roundup from Stop MFE Brighton 2013.

brighton

On the other side of the road are several hundred of us who don’t care for cages.

As you all know by now, a neo-nazi front group called March For England comes to Brighton every year to incur the wrath of the inhabitants by shouting fascist slogans in a police kettle; in addition to the pathetic spectacle above, a handful of portly fashion victims called casuals united, NWI, CFX, ETC, ect went off-piste (off pissed?) to incur some proper wrath. After all their secret discussions we earwigged on, the best strategy they could come up with was dressing up as anarchists(?) Given that we all know them, and each other, this was clearly going nowhere… Oh, I’m bored with this.

Here’s a collection of accounts from participants and observers:

March for England 2013 – UK Indymedia

Brighton 24th April 2013 – Something For Everyone!!! – ANTI-FASCIST NETWORK

boneheads battered in brighton – East Midlands Anti-fascists

MOBS AND COPPERS ..an anti-fascist day out by the seaside. by Schnews

MfE battered and humiliated on the streets of Brighton – EDL news

Snapshots from Brighton – amilabosnae.

ENGLISH FASCISTS TOOK THEIR FIRST BEATING OF THE SUMMER IN BRIGHTON THIS WEEKEND – Vice Magazine

Fascists mistake Brighton Pavilion for a mosque and bleat about it on twitter.

Police satisfied with March for England operation – Sussex police defend the most expensive fuckup in their entire history.

Autonomy Films for International Workers Day presents on Sat 4th May in Bridport:

Click to enlarge7.00pm for 7.30pm Saturday 4th May 2013
W.I. Hall, North Street, Bridport
Entry £3 (less if you can’t afford it) + Vegetarian soup for sale from 6.30 pm
Also…

 
Some other interesting local events organised by others:
Friday 26th April 7.00pm Unity Hall, opp. Bus station, Yeovil
Banner Theatre’s entertaining live show ‘Fighting the Cuts’ presented by Yeovil Trades Council Entry free

 

Friday 26th April 8.00pm Town Hall, Bridport
‘Or, the Whale’ talk on the economic and mythic significance of the sperm whale by Philip Hoare. 42nd Lecture on Everything
£6, under-18s free

 
Monday 6th May 7.00 pm for 7.30pm The Corn Exchange, High St Dorchester
Ken Loach’s film ‘Spirit of ’45’ presented by Dorchester Trades Council Entry by donation

 
Thursday 9th May 8.00pm (venue to be confirmed)
‘Art practice, natural sciences and ecology to address issues of future sustainability of the planet’ talk by Angela Cockayne 43rd Lecture on Everything £6, under-18s free.

Press Release. Bournemouth Uncut responds to reaction over its ‘Who wants to evict a millionaire’ action.

Bournemouth UncutFor immediate release: 19/04/2013

On 1st April the government introduced the bedroom tax, making 670,00 people worse off for having a spare room, even if it’s for a disabled partner or child, or foster children to sleep in at the same time as giving 13,000 millionaires a tax cut [1]. In reaction to this and in response to a national call-out from UK Uncut, Bournemouth Uncut took our creative civil disobedience straight to the people who are directly pushing and benefiting from these cuts.

Bournemouth Uncut is a local group part of UK Uncut, a grassroots movement using direct action to fight the cuts and highlight alternatives to austerity. On Saturday 13th April 2013 a group of activists took action as part of UK Uncut’s nationwide “Who wants to evict a millionaire” that saw actions round the country, including London, Manchester and Chelmsford against the governments changes to housing benefit dubbed the “bedroom tax”.

We are disappointed at Cllr Mike White’s decision to brand our actions sick, and feel that what this government of millionaires is doing to single-mothers, disabled people and low-earners up and down the country is what is actually sick.

In reaction to Poole MP Robert Syms statement to Bournemouth Echo where he claimed direct action would make him and his government “more determined to make sure [they] make fairer policy in terms of housing” [2] Bournemouth Uncut say that they will continue to work with other direct action groups locally and nationally until the “bedroom tax” is added to the ever growing number of coalition u-turns [3].

###ENDS###

For more information and interviews:
Email BournemouthUncut@riseup.net
Call 07596 388 848

[1]http://www.labour.org.uk/torymillionairesdayshare
[2]http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/10367079.John_Beesley_to_Bournemouth_Uncut__not_all_councils_are_the_same/
[3]http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/may/31/coalition-u-turns-full-list

Martin on Thatcher’s demise.

“You get better riots under the conservatives.”