Summary of Left Unity Leeds Launch Meeting on the 22nd of May 2013

These are the notes taken during the meeting for record keeping sake. A full report of the meeting will be made available later on the blog.

       Notes from Alan Gibbons meeting

       Hands off our Homes – fantastic campaign, real resistance from below – needs to get to more places, esp. Lingfield.

       Keep Our NHS Public – end of 65 years of NHS! American system coming! It is going to hit home. Go to your own GP, involve with patient participation and clinical commissioning.  KONP group, meeting and leafletting.

       Wakefield Left Unity – there is a fightback. Ballots for strike action. Clerical staff in UNISON already been out, more action to come.  Get union reps and strikers to talk to meetings.

       Spirit of ‘45 – we were in it together to set welfare state up.  What will make the difference now? People should reclaim the Labour Party and trade unions.

       Socialism? Or mass movement? Word demonized in press. Don’t need the word, we’ve got morality

       Left unity like a unicorn. Spent too much time discussing what we disagree on, rather than what we agree on – what we are fighting against and fighting for.

       Lessons from past – easier when struggles going forward. History of united activity in Leeds – continue unity in those struggles.

       UAF meet 7.30PM, 3rd Tuesday every month in Civic Hall – fight fascism and racism.

       UKIP is a warning. Ken Loach’s appeal – not just for elections, but in struggle. Got to name capitalism as enemy and to fight for alternative – socialism. What lies ahead? Needs discussion. Get involved – organising meeting June 5th in Broadcasting Place.

       Different traditions, be a big church – like the Morning Star. We agree on 90%

       Labour don’t represent an alternative, need a working class alternative. Lessons from Lingfield – lack working class socialist alternative on that estate. Need left organization rooted in every community and workplace.

       Labour in the communities – in the past. Now, we want activists in communities. Lesson from KONP at Labour conference. 65th anniversary of NHS – want to campaign against privatisation. Meet in Millennium Square. Campaign against Virgin. Put Labour Party on the spot. Push Labour to the left. For public housing, against war, discrimination, privatisation. Rebuild grassroots organisation.

       UKIP – Tea Party? Astroturfing. Claim to be movement of working class – don’t alienate people, show we’ve got working class roots.

       Unity in action – work in Lingfield, successful – revitalised UAF. Done by a handful – needed more people. Hands Off Our Homes – needs more activists. KONP – need more people. Stimulate unity in action. We’ve got to win.

       UKIP racism – influences Tories and Labour – need to confront  racist arguments about immigration, build unity.

       Can it happen? Going to be what people want it to be. Share information.

       One Member One Vote (OMOV)

       Left organizations not changed much since 70s – Left Unity needs to be different and broaden things out. Not arguing about nature of USSR.

       10,000 people in Green Party. Willing to work together in future.


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