The People’s Assembly took a step forward in Birmingham last night with a launch rally attended by 250 people. The rally heard from trades unionists and a wide range of anti-austerity campaigners, all of whom strongly supported the formation of a People’s Assembly to bring together all our struggles in a united movement.
Speaking at the rally, Salma Yaqoob denounced austerity as “a war of the richest in our society against the poorest”. Pointing out that the rich and powerful were skilled in using “weapons of mass distraction” to shift the blame for their crisis, she argued that the anti-austerity movement can learn from the way the anti-war movement in Birmingham brought thousands of people into struggle against the Iraq war, and gave her support to plans for a day of civil disobedience on 5 November.
Other speakers hit back at the attacks on disabled people, the disproportionate effect of austerity on black communities, and the cruel bedroom tax. They were joined by trades unionists campaigning against the privatisation of Royal Mail, against attacks on teachers pay and conditions, against cuts to fire services and in opposition to local government cuts.
The next meeting of Birmingham People’s Assembly takes place on Monday 4 November, 7pm, at the UNITE offices, 211 Broad Street.