Chris Baugh speaking at Socialism 2017



well Sarah comrades first of all thanks for the opportunity to bring my personal and political solidarity to this brilliant rally and this celebration of socialist ideas sharing it with such distinguished comrades and as Sara's indicated what better time to celebrate those ideas in the centenary of the great Russian Revolution with Donald Trump in the oval oval office and a Tory government visibly crumbling before our eyes we are confronted by a economic and it should always be remembered an environmental crisis of massive proportions which show the relevance today of socialist ideas not just to help explain the world but as somebody once said to change it and as Sarah said as a proud socialist party member and the elected assistant general secretary of pcs since 2004 I'm proud of the contribution I've made over three decades of work in helping defeat one of the most reactionary leadership's in the British trade union movement in CPS a confirmed confirmed by the recent release of government papers that prove a conspiracy between the Thatcher government and that right-wing leadership to deny a comrade a brilliant comrade John McCready from his rightful place as the elected general secretary of CPSA – now to counter this threat we built in the cps a and followed this through into pcs a brand can file left and we won support after many years have struggled for a militant industrial political response to the attacks of successive tory and let's not forget New Labour government's and I'm proud of being part of a leadership working alongside comrades like Janice Godrich John mcanally Fran Heathcoat Maryanne Lloyd working alongside marks a walker and a left Unity National Executive Committee and I'm proud of the role that we have collectively played in leading the fight against austerity in recent years and we've had to contend not just with an attack on the conditions of our members we've also had to contend with an attack on union rights in the civil service and our answer to this has been to defy the threat to our union funds by re recruiting in the mother of all recruitment exercises members back into the Union and like the RMT in the POA before us have emerged organizationally stronger and prepared and wet ready to continue to fight on behalf of our members and our for answer has also been to fight for tax justice to fight for the jobs and resources in Revenue and Customs to collect the tens of billions stolen from the public purse by the super-rich as a result of tax avoidance tax evasion and uncollected taxis and our answer in the DWP as a result of industrial action and political pressure has been to challenge the office closure program and to halt to call for a halt to the disaster that Universal Credit rollouts would involve so many millions of working people and our answer as a result of industrial pressure and a court victory has been to halt the attempt by the government to massively cut the redundancy payments of our members designed to make it quicker and cheaper to sack pcs members and our answer as sera referred to has been a consultative pay ballot with 99% voting to reject the pay cap and nearly 80% in a vote to take action if the Tories don't listen with a turnout a fraction under 50% this represents the best results and most representative vote we've ever secured in APCs ballots and this gives us this gives us a decisive mandate to take up the fight against the public sector pay cap to build with public sector unions through the – you see we hold them to account but in parallel we talk to those unions and build up support that those are prepared and serious about support in a programme of sustained industrial action that will be made that we needed to force back such an enfeebled Tory government to finish comrades the election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader the popular support for the election manifesto I believe marks a turning point in British politics but to rebuild the power of British unions is to follow the example of the RMT defending public safety on the railways the magnificent the Magnificent result turn out the 74% of C postal workers in the CWU who voted in support of industrial action to defend their rights as workers and they deserve and whatever the delays as a result of the Mr Justice Supper stones Court judgment they deserve and can expect the Solidarity of the Socialist Party and organized working class in Britain today hello and of the bakers union who organised historic the first ever strike in Britain of McDonald's workers fighting for 10 pounds an hour and the rights are unionized in the fast-food industry but it's not just the consistent day-to-day struggles of trade unions to counter the vast imbalance of wealth and power between capital and labor it is about offering an alternative to a failed capitalist system and offering the vision of a socialist society thanks for listening comrade [Applause]

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