‘The vicious killing of George Floyd has highlighted the racism that still pervades developed capitalist societies and their state institutions’, Mollie Brown declared at the Communist Party of Britain’s Executive Committee meeting this weekend. She pointed to recent examples of the deaths and serious injuries of black detainees in police custody in Britain, the US and France which, she suggested, were also related to the use of dangerous restraint techniques that were used disproportionately against black and working-class people.
Apprenticeships, on paper, sound like a fantastic initiative, right? Learning practical skills for the workplace, gaining qualifications, all while earning a wage. Indeed, there is a romantic image surrounding apprenticeships that still pervades among popular opinion, students learning to become skilled craftsmen at the foot of an all knowing master, the making of the artisans of the future, all very nostalgic.
It was this romantic image that was harnessed by the Conservative Government in its push for apprenticeships, including degree apprenticeships, to be rolled out en masse in the early 2010s, with Cameron vowing to create 3 million apprenticeships, including prestigious ‘degree apprenticeships’, in 2014, payed for via cuts to housing benefit of course.
The Young Communist League has issued an updated statement on the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) in response to yesterday’s (10 May 2020) government announcement attacking lockdown protections.
May Day has long been the central focus in the Labour Movement’s annual calendar, but it is not the sole day of action that recognises the efforts of working people. International Workers Memorial Day is celebrated every year on the 28th of April and while it does not have the same proud tradition that International Workers Day has, it remains a poignant day to remember those whose lives have been lost while at work.
The nature of trades unions under both capitalism and socialism is a question which has occupied many sections of the international Marxist movement since the beginning of the 20th century and before. The basics are, of course, obvious.
Trades unions are formed where workers unite to defend their immediate interests against those of capital. In fact, the very existence of trades unions is due to the basic contradiction between labour and capital. The primary motivation of capital is to increase the surplus value extracted from the workers.