During the succesful pensions strike on 10 May, members of Bootle Taxes Branch faced a confrontation by fascists. Six members of the far-right groups North West Infidels (NWI) attempted to intimidate pickets, hurling abuse and threatening violence, before being moved on by police.
A full report of the incident by Liverpool Antifascists can be read here.
Although no physical assaults took place, we regard this incident as very serious. North West EDL members have also set up a deeply inflammatory and offensive facebook page about one of our reps in Bootle.
United we stand, divided we fall
Incidents involving far right groups are on the increase. Recently, PCS members were attacked in Brighton, a trade union demonstration in Lewisham was attacked and there have been threats made to anti fascist campaigners in Leeds, amongst many other incidents.
This clearly shows that any illusions people may have that far right organisations represent the views of ordinary people are completely dispelled. Far right groups are opposed to people being members of an organisation which defends conditions at work and fights for improvements in the workplace and wider society. Trade unions are still the biggest voluntary organisation in Britain and continue to be the majority voice for working people.
Far right organisations do not represent the interests of ordinary working people; instead they seek to spread racial hatred and division, especially within ethnic minority communities. It’s not the fault of these communities that the government seeks to implement the biggest attacks on our working and living conditions for a generation. It is the fault of the millionaire speculators and big business that our economy is in crisis.
The far right offers no answers to the one million unemployed young people or the thousands of disabled and vulnerable people under attack by the coalition’s austerity measures.
It is in this context that we must explain to our members and communities why far right organisations must be opposed and that all members should support trade unionists and community campaigners who’re are fighting for the alternative to the government’s cuts package.
PCS alternative to the cuts
PCS members have participated in numerous anti fascist demonstrations across the UK. We can be confident that it’s our message – that no cuts are necessary and that the billions of pounds of uncollected tax avoided by the super rich should be collected to be invested in public services.
We can’t get away from the fact that attacks by the far right are on the increase. Although voter participation is continuing to decline, mainly down to vacuum that exists because mainstream parties aren’t representing our views, we’re also seeing a rejection of far right support – evident by their decrease in vote in the recent local elections, however we ask members to remain vigilant.
Members are reminded to:
- Ensure safety and security measures are discussed and planned in advance of demonstrations and future action/activity;
- Continue to promote the PCS alternative to the cuts;
- Keep a watching brief on far right activity in local areas;
- Link up with community and anti fascist campaigners;
- Encourage participation in anti fascist activity;
- Contact group office in the event of potential threats in local areas.