Privatisation and cuts to blame for low wage

I HAVE watched with interest the unfolding debate in the pages of your newspaper following the article you featured about the march against immigration in Boston.

I am disappointed but not surprised that the organisation of this march has been announced.

I would like to add the views of Lincoln and District Trades Union Council to the discussion.

The trades union movement in our county would agree with the organiser of the march, Mr Everitt, that low pay and unemployment are important issues around which to organise campaigns.

It is a disgrace that there is such endemic low pay within Lincolnshire.

It is also a disgrace that areas of Lincolnshire have unemployment levels that are higher than the national average.

However, this is where the Lincoln and District TUC will diverge from the comments and actions of Mr Everitt.

In organising a march against immigration, he lays the blame for these problems at migrant workers, or the Government for letting these migrant workers into the country.

His message is that if these migrant workers weren’t here, or if no more arrived, the living conditions of people from Lincolnshire would improve.

The trade union movement in Lincolnshire would disagree.

There is no doubt that living standards are deteriorating for the majority of the population.

Inequality is at a Victorian-era level, 2.5 million people are unemployed (including one million young people) and pay increases are consistently less than price rises.

This situation is not caused by migrant workers, but by the privatisation and cuts agenda of successive governments of the last 30 years.

Mr Everitt – and those who are tempted to support his campaign – would find their time better spent by putting their energy into a positive campaign for jobs, such as the Youth Fight for Jobs campaigners who – 75 years on – are following in the footsteps of the hundreds of men who marched from Jarrow to London.

Lack of jobs, low pay and deteriorating public services are not caused by immigrants. They are caused by the ‘piper’ politicians who run this country and who play the tune of the fat cat bosses in the banks and big businesses of Britain.

Lincoln and District TUC will be supporting trade union members and community activists who will oppose the march on November 19 in Boston.

Those who reject racist division and support unity amongst working people will be assembling at 12 noon at Sleaford Road park in Boston. Lincoln and District TUC encourages working people from all nationalities to come along and get involved, and to unite in the trade unions and anti-cuts groups behind a common programme of defence of jobs, pay and public services for all.

NICK PARKER

Lincoln and District TUC