Last Friday was May Day, and as working class agitators we wanted to celebrate it with some action. Having dedicated much of our time to the Bookfair, Anti-Election Campaigning, SolNet, workplace organising, and producing Organise!84 we didn’t have quite as much time to plan and mobilise as in 2012/13. A call out for a week of action against workfare made it easy to choose what to do though. Afterall the DWP listed us as a threat to the workfare scheme – and we want to disappoint our fans. Continue reading
On Saturday 13th of December, a group of spirited anarchists and other rebellious pixies, donned Christmas hats and Santa beards. Armed with several hundred leaflets, several dozen mince pies, and a handful of song sheets we set out to inject a bit of anti capitalist rebellion into the heart of the consumer season!
We’d decided that companies exploiting people via the governments ‘workfare’ forced labour schemes were particularly worthy of our scorn at this time of year. We set about demonstrating and partying outside and, despite the protests of a tag along PCSO, inside a number of serial offenders.
Last Saturday over 50 people gatherd in Broadmead for an anti-Workfare demonstration called by ourselves and Bristol Solidarity Federation. Aswell as friends from Bath Anarchists (BARF), the IWW and the Socalist Party there were plenty of new faces we hadn’t seen on previous demos.
Before we had even set off our spirits were lifted by the news that Superdrug had already pulled out of workfare just before the demonstrations set to take place across the country, Result! The first stop on our tour of companies using forced labor under the workfare scheme was Dorothy Perkins in Cabot Circus. Its always good to reclaim spaces like Cabot that are technically no longer public but in the hands of private owners. The security were powerless to stop us due to our weight of numbers, and ability to resist their clever mind tricks such as saying ‘don’t you want to go that way instead?‘. Continue reading
The spring & early summer saw an active campaign against companies involved in workfare in Bristol; Youth fight for jobs organised a demo, followed by three more organised by ourselves. We saw successes as part of a national campaign that resulted in numerous high profile companies pulling out including Boots, Sainsburys, BHS and Holland&Barratt – who now pay their new staff.
However since then things have been a bit quiet, and the government has taken this as an oppurtunity to push the scheme again convincing retailers to take people on workfare schemes instead of hiring temporary christmas staff or giving existing workers more overtime.
So its about time it all kicked off again! Our Friends over at Solfed have called for a demonstration focusing its attention on Poundland (solfeds workfare target nationally), taking place this Sunday. Bring yourselves, banners, flags and your mates!
Where: Poundland, 42 – 46 East Street, Bedminster.
When: This Sunday(18th) 11.30am – 1pm
(those of you in east bristol can get the train from stapleton road > bedminster (changing at templemeads, takes half an hour)
Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/556646751018678/
Indymedia Event: https://www.bristol.indymedia.org.uk/article/711772