Richard Burgon: End of austerity? The justice department knows that’s a lie

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018

Austerity is over. That’s what Theresa May claimed at this year’s Tory conference – but if that were true for justice, everyone in the sector would breathe a huge sigh of relief. People and services are at breaking point having faced harsh cuts for eight years. And as Shadow Justice Secretary, I know there is sadly no relief in sight. Just weeks after the Prime Minister’s claims, the Institute of Fiscal Studies produced its Green Budget report, which shows justice still remains the most cut department of all – down 40% in the decade to 2020. It is those Tory cuts that have unleashed an unprecedented crisis in our prisons and wider justice system. As the IFS noted: “One public service very much showing signs of strain is the prison system. Spending on prisons fell by more than a fifth between 2009?10 and 2016?17, while the prison population remained broadly constant… Over this period of spending cuts, service quality inside prisons has markedly deteriorated.” Local law centres that deal with defending people’s essential housing, employment and welfare rights and youth offender teams have been just as badly hit. Our communities have paid the price for those cuts. Worryingly, far from […]

[Read more]

CONFERENCE: Stand With Corbyn – Unite to End Tory Austerity.

Sunday, September 9th, 2018

The Labour Assembly Against Austerity Annual Conference: ‘Stand With Corbyn – Unite to End Tory Austerity’ is taking place on October 27th at Student Central, Central London. It’s a fantastic opportunity to hear from leading figures in the Labour movement as they put forward Labour’s progressive programme for Government and show that Jeremy Corbyn is a Prime Minister in Waiting. October 27th – Get your tickets here!

[Read more]

The Corbyn effect: How apathy became hope – by Steve Turner of Unite

Tuesday, March 1st, 2016

Recently Tony Blair professed bafflement at the rise — on both sides of the Atlantic — of popular movements by people who in Blair’s view choose to “rattle the cage”. I think this is a mischaracterisation. Those who have been energised into supporting Sanders, Corbyn and movements such as Podemos and Syriza want to break the cage, ending the failed policies that continue to dominate and distort so much of our national discourse. What these movements represent is a desire and hope for something better. I don’t think that is baffling at all. In two weeks the Budget will see another repeat of the regular farce of Chancellor George Osborne announcing old targets missed (again), new targets no-one expects to be met and earnings growth forecasts that will fail to materialise. There will be a series of promises in his speech that will make headlines and prove to be empty, claiming a “march of the makers,” that the economy will be rebalanced and there will be higher wages. The reality is that manufacturing output is significantly lower now than in 2008. Jobs are being sucked into London, where employment is nearly 12 per cent higher than it was in 2010. […]

[Read more]

Pre-Budget Rally: Better Off With Labour

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

Better Off With Labour – the Alternative to Osborne’s Cuts 7pm, Wednesday, 9th March 2016 House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA >> Register for free on eventbrite Speakers: John McDonnell MP, Shadow Chancellor, Diane Abbott MP, Shadow International Development Secretary, Cat Smith MP, Shadow Minister for Women Helen Goodman MP, Treasury Select Committee Maya Goodfellow, writer for ‘The Independent’ & ‘LabourList,’ Shelly Asquith, Vice-President (Welfare,) NUS, Steve Turner, Unite the Union & People’s Assembly Against Austerity. >> Register for free on eventbrite On the evening of March 9th, the Labour Assembly Against Austerity will host our annual pre-budget meeting, analysing the current situation regarding austerity, and seeking to build support for both the People’s Assembly Against Austerity Movement (including its April 16 National March for Health, Homes, Jobs & Education) and support for Labour’s alternatives to austerity. >> Join the event on facebook

[Read more]

Austerity: The Election Briefing

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

Austerity: The Election Briefing With the launch of party manifestos and the TV Leaders debate, the Tories, Liberal Democrats and UKIP have promoted a number of myths about austerity which should be dispelled. In this short simple election briefing, we take on three of the key myths which may appear on the doorstep. Download a copy and share with your friends.   Myth 1 “Labour’s excessive public spending wrecked the British economy.” Reality Labour didn’t spend enough. For most of Labour’s time in office (1997-2010) the share of the economy taken up by both government spending and taxes was lower than under Thatcher. The recession was kicked off by a private sector financial crisis – beginning with banks in the US and spreading to Britain via its banks, which were then bailed out with huge public funds. The collapse in private sector investment was the main cause of the recession and remains the main cause of current stagnation. Increases in government spending and investment are still necessary to kick start a real economic recovery. Government spending only went up after the financial crisis, firstly on the bail outs and subsequently as tax revenues fell and unemployment and poverty rose, welfare payments […]

[Read more]