It’s about getting the message out and engagement from top to bottomOctober 1 2015
Union membership is decreasing, Labour Party membership is increasing and the papers are telling you we can’t win and will ruin our country.
Let’s look at some facts:
- Unions fought for paid annual leave.
- Unions fought (and still do) for your Health and Safety rights at work.
- Unions continue to campaign and were the fire-starter in equal pay for women.
- Unions created the first working people’s owned political party, The Labour Party.
- Unions CAN make a difference through politics that is for the better of the many.
Before the turn of the 20thcentury, politics involved the rich and their richer friends. Workers were already organising themselves fighting for better conditions and pay. Similar to us but their pay and conditions were far worse. Children lived in work-houses, families lived in poverty and the amount people earned was never really enough to cover their needs. Our own people were basically slaves for the rich, and black people just had it even worse. Workers from across the country started to come together and talk about how their issues were similar to each other and how if they could manage to get into parliament and make new laws to improve their working lives, they could maybe actually make a difference. They tried withdrawing their services (strike) and on some occasions it worked, but they would nearly always face a backlash. For example, the leader of the workers who called for the strike would be punished, arrested, beaten or even killed. Workers may have gotten their half a penny a month increase in pay, but then found that had to pay half a penny more for their lunch. It was a cruel world to live in.
Workers knew they deserved better, they knew they could make a difference and have more rights, be able to enjoy a weekend and not have to live in debt with their boss. So they organised themselves into a political party, The Labour party. With help from a few rich socialists and the break-up of the then Liberals’ they managed to get themselves onto the ballot and managed to form a Government in 1924. In 24 years the party for workers had grown rapidly, making it into newspapers and local meetings happening in pubs and village halls this was the start of a party that offered an alternative to the parties of the rich.
This Labour party stood for social justice, equality, sustainability and worker’s rights. This party didn’t stand for just winning, they stood for what the many working people of the UK wanted and that’s how they won. For too long, our party, the working people’s party hasn’t stood for enough of what WE the working people want. They’ve stood to win and that was their goal, they didn’t stand for policies, they stood to just out-do their opposition which we all thought weren’t much different. Some of us fought the corner and tried to encourage others to become involved and keep moving the party back to fighting for the working people and others stood back and watched as the party tried to appeal the tory voters rather than their own.
Only half of the people in this country actually voted in the last election, that means there are around 30 million people who aren’t engaged, who need representation who are not happy with the options given to them at the last election. Why on earth should Labour be chasing 11 million tory voters when we could engage with 30 million who haven’t voted but could at the next election.
The papers may tell us we’re wrong, but they’re fighting the many. More people voted for Jeremy Corbyn than there are members of the Conservative Party, meaning his mandate is bigger than Dave’s. More people have joined Labour since Jeremy was elected than there are members of the Liberal Democrats. The Labour party have the largest membership ever.
We have the mandate of the many, now let’s stop playing up to what a few MP’s and journalists may say they don’t like, let’s start playing up to the mighty sound of the real working and middle classes of England who are crying out for anti-austerity, public ownership and a Government that will stand for them, not just to win over the opposition.
It’s time for unions and the Labour Party to be one again and start creating our own media, spreading our own message and really engaging at every level of people’s day-to-day lives.