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Learn About Labour

27/11/2016

Afternoon session: 1.30pm – 3.30pm – register here

Sunday 4 December 2016

Community Base (South Wing door), 113 Queen’s Road, Brighton BN1 3XG

8 ECP outside

LRC members, friends from the English Collective of Prostitutes and other Corbyn supporters celebrate the election of Jeremy Corbyn outside Labour’s Special Conference on 12 September 2015

With Jeremy Corbyn re-elected as Labour Leader, Sussex LRC and friends want to encourage Labour members and supporters to get more involved in their Party. We’re holding participatory workshops designed for all socialists who want to learn more about Labour and how the Party works. Our aim is to demystify Labour’s structures from branches to the NEC, and help people feel confident joining-in or leading Labour activities, whether that’s speaking at a meeting, proposing a motion, leafleting, running a street stall, going canvassing, standing for election (perhaps as an officer, conference delegate, or councillor), or whatever you want to do.

These workshops are aimed at new members and members returning after many years, but you’re also welcome to contact us if you’re thinking of joining Labour, or are a long-term member with questions about the Party.  The same content will be covered in each session.

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The first session will focus on Brighton & Hove branches and constituencies. It is open to people outside Brighton & Hove, but future sessions are being planned with local groups across Sussex which may be more convenient.

Jeremy Corbyn’s re-election as Labour Leader is a victory for socialist politics. The LRC wants to see a Corbyn-led Labour government committed to transformative policies. To achieve this goal the LRC appeals to everyone who has been inspired by Jeremy to join (or return to) Labour, to now get active and involved in the Labour Party and their unions, in order to win the battle of ideas.

In Corbyn and McDonnell, the Labour Party has leaders with the collective will to implement democratic socialist policies in government. Now Labour’s leaders need to be supported by members informed and empowered to run campaigns and meetings which will inspire voters to support Labour.

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If you want to change the Labour Party, you have to change its rules. Sussex LRC aims to help members learn about Labour’s rules and how they operate, so that together we can make Labour a truly democratic party, where policy is determined from members-up by a democratic conference.

The workshops are free but donations to cover venue hire and other costs will be welcome.

NOTE: Entry to Community Base is via the South Wing door. The workshop is being held in the 5th floor conference room, which can be accessed via the lift or stairs.

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Solidarity with Southern Guards

06/10/2016

Come along to support RMT members striking to protect your safety:

Saturday 8 October – The Martletts, Crawley town Centre

7-10am, Monday 10 October – Hastings railway station & onto Bexhill

7-10am, Monday 17 October – Hastings railway station & onto Rye

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Leafleters and all supporters will be appreciated by  RMT members who normally work as guards on Southern Rail.  They have our full support for their ongoing strike action, being taken in defence of everyone’s safety on our railway.

Everybody should ask why Southern Rail management refused to settle this dispute by rejecting a new package offered by RMT, having previously also refused the same terms agreed between ScotRail and RMT.  Walking away from talks aimed at averting further strikes shows Southern Rail management has no concern for the massive disruption being caused to the travelling public, which has led to the company being dubbed #SouthernFail.

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The failing rail privateer was forced to withdraw its media campaign against staff but it remains impervious to public opinion that wants to “keep the guard on the train” for people’s safety and security, and has issued an ultimatum to staff accompanied by what some describe as a bribe and threats.

The “amazing” guard who kept passengers calm and safe during a recent derailment is just one example why guards on trains are simply essential.  Please do everything you can to support Southern guards taking action to protect your safety.  Ultimately, the best thing for that will be returning Britain’s railways to public ownership and re-unifying the network.  Hopefully the judicial review being funded by grassroots commuters to examine the Tory Government’s inaction over Southern Rail’s numerous failings and franchise breaches will result in the first steps toward that.

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Upcoming Members’ Meetings

22/09/2016

Sussex LRC Members’ Meeting

7pm, Tuesday 4 October 2016

Community Base (South Wing), 113 Queens Road, Brighton BN1 3XG

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This members-only meeting will decide Sussex LRC’s delegates, nominations and motions to Transforming Our Party to Transform Our Society – LRC annual conference and national AGM in London on Saturday 29 October.  (A separate meeting of Brighton & Hove LRC will also be held if desired by members.)  Please ensure that your LRC membership is fully paid-up to ensure that you can participate in the meeting, and arrive for a prompt start at 7pm. Members and affiliates have been sent an email with full details of this meeting.

A Hastings & Rother LRC members’ meeting on Friday 7 October will decide its delegates, nominations and motions to the LRC’s annual conference.

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Corbyn In! Tories Out!

08/09/2016

Let’s Get Corbyn Back In to Get The Tories Out!

6.30pm Monday 12 September 2016

Friends’ Meeting House, Ship Street, Brighton BN1 1AF

TUC Congress 2016 fringe meeting

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Jeremy Corbyn has stood in solidarity with countless strikers and offered the hand of friendship to as many campaigns. As 2016 TUC Congress arrives in Brighton at the start of the final fortnight of the Labour leadership election, the LRC fringe meeting will focus on the key issue of electing a Labour Leader who will represent the labour movement – fighting austerity and racism, taking key assets like our railways back into public ownership, saving others like our Fire Service and Post Offices, defending trade union rights and, critically, whose actions will match his words when it comes to the next Labour Government and ridding Britain of Thatcher’s anti-union laws. The LRC says: Let’s Get Corbyn Back In to Get the Tories Out!

Hear top speakers including: Shadow Chancellor and Corbyn Campaign Manager John McDonnell MP, Jackie Walker – national vice-Chair Momentum, Mark Serwotka – PCS General Secretary, Jennie Formby – Unite South East Regional Secretary, Matt Wrack – FBU General Secretary, Manuel Cortes – TSSA General Secretary, Ronnie Draper – BFAWU General Secretary, Tosh McDonald – ASLEF President, Steve Smith – RMT National Executive, Jon Rogers – Lambeth UNISON, and Sarah Walker, spokeswoman for the English Collective of Prostitutes.

Refreshments will be available when doors open at 6pm, with the meeting starting at 6.30pm. With these great speakers, this is an unmissable event!

Keep Corbyn – Our Party, Our Leader

04/07/2016

Still confident

Labour MPs are openly challenging Party democracy by publicly undermining Jeremy Corbyn as Labour’s elected Leader, despite Jeremy having been elected with the biggest mandate of any Party leader in British history just 9 months ago.  Jeremy has doubled Labour party membership, led Labour to four successive by-election victories, won every Mayoral seat Labour contested and taken Labour from 8-12% down in the polls last September to neck and neck with the Tories or even just ahead in some polls immediately before the MPs mounted their coup.  Jeremy has also reconnected the Labour Party with its base in the trade unions and excited young people about politics for the first time in a generation.  Jeremy Corbyn reaches the parts other Labour Leaders can’t as West Sussex Labour activist Dan Sartin sums up when talking about the Corbyn effect in Worthing.

MPs have sought to use the EU Referendum as their excuse but analysis showed 63% of Labour voters voted to Remain, compared to 64% of SNP voters but just 42% of Tories.  If anyone is to blame for the Leave vote it is Cameron, who called the Referendum and failed to win Tory supporters to Remain.  Jeremy deserves as much praise for the Labour vote as SNP MPs have given to Nicola Sturgeon for the SNP vote.

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(c) Ian Knox cartoon

 

Smearing the abilities or character of the Party’s elected leader may or may not be bringing the Party into disrepute (we know our thoughts but we’ll leave that one for Labour’s Compliance Unit) but, without question, 172 MPs putting themselves above 251,000 Party members is a clear attempt to subvert the principle of one member one vote and give MPs a veto over Labour Party democracy.  If you want to email your views to Labour MPs, like Hove’s Peter Kyle, you may want to ask them whose Party is this anyway?  Check the list of MPs backing Jeremy and let us know if your MP should be added.

Young Labour has full confidence in Jeremy Corbyn and YL member Lucy Whitehouse speaks for many when she questions why Labour MPs have turned against Jeremy and the Party.  Amongst all the recent tumult Jeremy Corbyn has remained ‘constant’ because he represents the solid, traditional Labour values on which the party was founded. His opponents within have been too quick to betray those values; their beliefs are built on shifting sands. Their unreliability and readiness to turn and turn about means they’re not able to form a strong opposition to the Tories.

Keep Corbyn to fix UK

To show your support for Jeremy Corbyn as Labour Leader, propose this emergency motion of confidence in Jeremy at your CLP or Labour, trade union or Labour-affiliated branch.  Hundreds of councillors are publicly supporting Jeremy, including Hastings Council Leader Peter Chowney, and many others from Sussex.  (We have also learned of many who wanted to be listed but did not reply to the call in time!)  All the big unions are supporting Jeremy with many having released statements backing him as Labour Leader.  One of the most powerful comes from BFAWU, the Bakers Union.

If you want to defend the progressive, socialist agenda of Jeremy Corbyn and his Labour leadership team, including John McDonnell, Diane Abbott and many others, the most effective way to do that is as a Labour Party member or registered/affiliated supporter. Then you will have a vote in any leadership election. If you aren’t already a Labour member or supporter, join the Labour Party today .

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But don’t just leave it at that, get active in your local Labour Party and join those on the Left who support the Labour leadership – join the LRC – and join Momentum.  Importantly for Labour members in Brighton & Hove, make sure you and all Corbyn supporters you know prioritise coming to Brighton, Hove & District Labour Party AGM at 4pm on Saturday 9 July, in the main hall at City College, Pelham Street.  There you will have the chance to vote for a new Executive, auditors and Council Group observers.  Supporters of Jeremy Corbyn are standing for all posts and need your support to get elected.

With the Tories divided and facing a leadership contest at the same time the Brexit negotiations will be starting, the country needs a united Labour Party keeping up the fight to defend protections for workers, ensure that the poorest aren’t made to pay the price of any economic fall out, and fight the growth of racism and xenophobia.    The last thing we need is a period of self-indulgent navel gazing, or destructive infighting courtesy of the Parliamentary Labour Party.  Please sign the 38 Degrees petition to show your confidence in Jeremy Corbyn as Labour Leader and sign Momentum’s letter for a united Labour Party.

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Bringing Corbyn’s new politics into UNISON

12/06/2016

7pm, Wednesday 22 June 2016

Community Base, 113 Queens Road, Brighton BN1 3XG

UNISON conference fringe meeting

 

22.06.16 UNISON fringe

Hear from UNISON members, community campaigners and the Labour Left who support public services and stand with public sector workers facing against Tory cuts.  All welcome to discuss the fightback against the latest Tory attempts to fragment and destroy our public services and NHS.  Refreshments available from 6.30pm.  Use the South Wing door to gain entrance.

Stand-Up To Racism & Stop Witch-hunts

26/05/2016

7.15pm Wednesday 1 June 2016

Friends’ Meeting House, Ship Street, Brighton BN1 1AF

01.06.16 JW

Jackie Walker is a long-standing anti-racism campaigner who helped organise the defeat of UKIP leader Nigel Farage in Thanet at the 2015 election. She is the national vice-Chair of Momentum and an Executive member of the Labour Representation Committee (LRC). As a woman of Jewish as well as Afro-Caribbean heritage, who lives with her Jewish partner in an area targeted by UKIP and the far right, Jackie has to deal with racists and xenophobes face-to-face on a daily basis. Did Labour Party officials take this into account when publicly announcing Jackie’s suspension before informing her?  Hear from Jackie about her experience and support the campaign to reform Labour’s suspension process at this meeting  on 1 June.

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Ian Saville

 

The Jewish Socialists’ Group (JSG) is a campaigning organisation which fights for freedom and equality, focussing on issues that affect the Jewish community, other minorities and oppressed groups, and the wider labour movement, including opposition to racism and fascism, and support for refugees.  JSG has described “fearmongering” about anti-Semitism in the Labour Party as “a conscious and concerted effort by right-wing political forces to undermine the growing support among Jews and non-Jews alike for the Labour Party leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, and a measure of the desperation of his opponents” saying “we stand for free speech and open debate on Israel, Palestine and Zionism”.

Everyone attending this meeting will be encouraged to support the counter-protest to Stop the Fascist March in Brighton on Saturday 4 June.

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