Voices for Change
Local people are being asked to discuss ways of building a positive alternative to “austerity Britain” at two meetings this week.
The Scottish Left Project is holding meetings simultaneously in Cumbernauld and Kilsyth to give people the opportunity to enter into a dialogue about how a more democratic and equitable society can be built.
Jordan Daly, who helped set up the meeting in Cumbernauld, commented, “There is a new mood of political engagement in Scotland and a thirst for ideas that challenge the inequalities and injustices of austerity Britain. An alternative can be built and that can only be done through grass root campaigning and involvement where priorities are shaped through dialogue and debate. These meetings are aimed at providing that space for ideas to be discussed and through that shaping a positive alternative that will offer a vision of a more equal and just society.”
The meetings are leading into a formal launch event of the Scottish Left Project which will take place in Glasgow on Saturday 29th August.
Willie O’Neill who has helped arrange the meeting in Kilsyth added, “These meetings are one of many meetings taking place across Scotland that have given people the chance to shape the priorities and programme of the Scottish Left Project. Last year’s independence campaign and events taking place across Europe highlight that more and more people are rejecting the ideology of the free market and the economic ruin that it has brought. That questioning can collectively become the beginning of not only resistance, but also the possibility of real and meaningful change. If you want to be part of that, come along to these meeting and make your voice heard.”
The meetings are on Thursday 20th August in Greenfaulds CE Centre at 7pm and the Garrel Vale in Kilsyth at 7.30pm.
More details of the Scottish Left Project launch event can be found at http://www.leftlaunch2016.scot
End of release.
For more details: Jordan Daly 07919 886625, Willie O’Neill 07759 138015.
CUMBERNAULD & KILSYTH SSP NEWSLETTER – AUG 2015
To the complete bewilderment of the political class the Labour leadership campaign has managed to become interesting due to the emergence of Jeremy Corbyn as a possible leader of the Labour Party.
Flying in the face of the received wisdom of those that promote the idea of there being no alternative to the policies of neo-liberalism, it would appear that those opposed to austerity and inequality might attract some popular support. The ramifications of this will be the focus of our meeting on Thursday 13th August, in The Link Community Centre in Cumbernauld at 7.30pm.
The Scottish Left Project
The SSP recently confirmed its decision to become involved in the Scottish Left Project, an organisation that has been set up to continue the discussion on a how a left wing alternative can be built from those who have sought an alternative to the tired policies of the Westminster parties, particularly amongst those enthused by the pro-independence campaign.
A major event has been organised in Glasgow on August 29th and to build for that we have been involved in helping set up two meetings in Cumbernauld and Kilsyth. Both meetings take place on Thursday 20th August, with one being in the Greenfaulds Community Centre, Cumbernauld at 7pm and the other in the Garrel Vale, Kilsyth at 7.30pm.
Come along and have your say as the purpose of the meetings is to allow the agenda for this new project to be shaped by as wide a range of people as possible. The format will be as interactive and inclusive as possible to ensure that this is a project that is built from the grassroots up and not vice versa. Tickets for the launch on the 29th can also be obtained by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
We will continue the debate and review how the meetings have gone at our branch meeting on Thursday 27th August, again in The Link at 7.30pm.
For more information contact Kevin McVey on 07817 123917.
A meeting in Cumbernauld next week will consider the potential for boosting a challenge from the left in next year’s Holyrood elections.
Called by the local branch of the Scottish Socialist Party, the guest speaker will be Jonathon Shafi, a prominent figure in the Radical Independence Campaign and in the newly formed Scottish Left Project.
Local SSP member Kevin McVey commented, “The tectonic plates in Scottish politics have shifted over the last number of years, but one factor that remains is the need for a challenge from the left. A socialist voice, that will not only build campaigns and resistance to austerity, but will offer an alternative vision of a society based on redistributing wealth and prioritising the needs of people not profit. The SSP is always looking at ways that we can develop and find ways to continue to evolve a left alternative to the inequalities of capitalism in the twenty first century. That is why our recent National Conference agreed to discuss with the Scottish Left Project and others about how we can maximise the unity of those with a left wing perspective and seek to have socialists back in the Scottish Parliament.”
The party are hoping that people will come along and be part of the process of discussing how progressive and radical politics can develop in the future.
Mr McVey added “There are many people who have been inspired by the independence campaign and events in countries like Greece who want more than what mainstream politics are offering. There is no reason that the wave of opposition that is sweeping across Europe against the inequality and injustice that blights people’s lives cannot have an impact in Scotland. We hope people will come along to the meeting and consider how that can be done.”
The meeting is in The Link on Thursday 25th June at 7.30pm and all are welcome.
For more information: Kevin McVey 07817 123917
Unity against Austerity
36% of 2/3’s of the electorate have given the Tories all the mandate need to ramp up their policies of “austerity”.
Cameron’s public schoolboys will now feel that they can continue with the process of destroying the collective provision of public services that can offer some protection to working people’s lives whilst ramping up the obscene inequality that scars 21st Century Britain.
Only a collective response can defeat them. A social movement must now be built that will maximise unity against austerity and make the case for a society that prioritises people not profit. Saturday June 20th’s demonstration in Glasgow can be part of building that resistance and the SSP will be part of it. We will discuss where the campaign against austerity is at our branch meeting on Thursday 11th June at 7.30pm.
Coffee & Chat
Members of the local branch will be having our stall on Saturday morning outside the Tryst . After it you can also catch up with us in the coffee shop within the Tryst Sports Centre in Cumbernauld at 1pm on Saturday June 13th. Feel free to come along for a chat about the SSP in Cumbernauld. If you want to find out more about the party, it’s the perfect to time to meet some of our branch members.
Unity for Socialism
The SSP has a long tradition of building support for unity amongst socialists and anti-capitalists. It is in our DNA and we will work to achieve unity in action for an independent socialist Scotland.
As part of that our recent Conference agreed to open discussion with the recently established Scottish Left Project (SLP) in order to look at ways that we can work together to develop our programme for socialist change in Scotland.
As part of that process we have invited a representative of the SLP to our next meeting on Thursday June 25th, again at 7.30pm. We extend an open invitation to any left-minded local people to come along and hear more about what the SLP are all about.
For more information contact Kevin McVey on 07817 123917.
What Warm Welcome ?
Local members of the Scottish Socialist Party have described a far right group’s claim of a warm welcome in Cumbernauld as being “ludicrous”.
A recent visit by Britain First to the town saw them being met by a demonstration that made it clear that their racist message was not welcome in the town. Local party member Kevin McVey commented, “Britain First is known for making outlandish claims about its own importance and last week’s comments seem to fall into that category. The truth was that when they arrived they were met by a large group of protestors who wanted to make it clear that their poisonous message was not welcome in our communities. They hung about for half an hour, giving their obligatory Nazi salutes, before departing. Meanwhile some of their colleagues huddled in a pub elsewhere in the town. Any idea that they were somehow warmly received is ludicrous. We need unity to stand up against austerity in our communities and groups like this who seek to sow division and hate will be opposed by all but a tiny minority.”
The party is also concerned that the group met in a local pub and is seeking clarification about how this happened. Mr McVey added, “We will be contacting the Condorrat Arms to clarify the circumstances about the meeting Britain First had in the pub. We wish to know if it was a pre-booked event because if it was, it raises serious questions about how a far right hate group is given access to a pub that is described as being family friendly. As a resident of Condorrat I am extremely uncomfortable about the idea that local people could go into the pub and land amongst a group of people who promote hate and intolerance of people because of their race, religion or sexuality. Understandably this has caused some concern and should not be repeated.”
For more information: Kevin McVey 07817123917
Turning Yellow ??
It was a night of mixed emotions – laughing as the Labour big wigs lost what they assumed as their birth right, sobbing at the thought of another five years of the Tories and wondering how much would really change in Scotland under a party that didn’t spell out what Scotland it would be strong for – the Duke of Buccleuch, Brian Soutar or the millions looking for a challenge to the dismal austerity agenda of the Tories.
Now is the time for reflection, on how a mass campaign and actions in our communities and workplaces can challenge a system that continues to demand that the poor pay the price for the recklessness of the rich. Our post election discussion will take place on Thursday 14th May, in The Link at 7.30pm.
Let’s Have A Debate!
The SSP is proud to be a party that organises from its membership up, where debate and decisions are in the hands of everyone who joins.
Our Annual Conference, which takes place on Saturday 23rd May in the Augustine United Church, Edinburgh at 1pm, will cover a wide range of topics including how to mount a socialist challenge in the 2016 Scottish Parliament elections and building resistance to austerity. All members are welcome so get in touch if you would like to come along.
We will discuss how our conference went and the decisions it made at our meeting on Thursday 28th May. Again in The Link at 7.30pm.
For more information contact Kevin McVey on 07817 123917.
Let The Workers Speak!
Local party members of the Scottish Socialist Party are looking to contribute to the election debate, despite not contesting in the local constituency, by holding a public meeting in Cumbernauld. The party is standing in only small number of seats but are still seeking to highlight policies that they feel will appeal to Scotland’s “working class majority”.
Local branch chair Willie O’Neill commented, “We made a call for an Independence Alliance to contest the General Election to maintain the momentum of the Yes campaign into the next stage of the movement for an independent Scotland. However, this call was rebuffed by the other pro-independence parties so we agreed that we would stand only in a small number of seats and produce a manifesto that we would hope speaks to some of the concerns of working people who are too often ignored by the mainstream political parties.”
The party is highlighting two main themes in their manifesto, which are the pressures caused by low pay and the savage austerity that will impoverish even more people. Mr O’Neill added, “Scotland’s working class majority are too often marginalised in the policies offered by the mainstream parties. Ludicrously you have parties proposing small improvements in the minimum wage but some of the increases will not come in until 2020. We are calling for a £10 an hour living wage, implemented now, to tackle the scandal of the growth of poverty amongst those in work. For similar reasons we are demanding the end of zero hour contracts. Similarly we are campaigning to end the austerity politics that can see politicians glibly say that they will cut another £12 billion from the Social Security budget without spelling out how that will further impoverish the already poor. It is about challenging a Westminster consensus that is happy to sanction savage attacks on working people whilst happy to see the already rich increase their wealth. We are trying to give people a chance to debate these kinds of issues and hope people come along to join the debate.”
The meeting takes place in The Link Community Centre in Cumbernauld on Thursday 23rd April at 7.30pm.
For more information: Kevin McVey 07817 123917.