‘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.
‘Our response must include recognising the class basis of prejudice, discrimination and racism in Britain and other imperialist countries, and urge black and white to unite in the fight against them’, Ms Brown insisted.
The CP executive agreed a range of proposals from the party’s Anti-Racism Anti-Fascism commission which met on Saturday, including the early publication of a pamphlet on ‘Covid, Class and Racism’. Responding to the collapse of the fourth round of Brexit talks between the British government and EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier, Mollie Brown warned against attempts by the EU and British big business to force an extension of the ‘transition period’ with its EU rules and jurisdictions beyond the end of the year. ‘Barnier’s insistence that future British governments should not be allowed to intervene in the economy to protect key industries and enterprises, regulate private investment and end competitive tendering is unacceptable and intended to frustrate any settlement this year on future UK-EU relations’, she claimed.
‘Likewise, the bid for full EU access to Britain’s already depleted fishing waters is a deliberately provocative demand that the EU has never insisted upon in trade deals with Canada and other countries’, Ms Brown added. Britain’s Communists urged the Labour Party leadership not to repeat previous mistakes by supporting an extension of the ‘transition period’ and siding with those ‘anti-democratic elements’ in the Tory, Labour, LibDem, Green and nationalist parties who have never accepted the 2016 EU referendum result.
The CP executive also received reports from around Britain highlighting the massive threat to what remains of Britain’s industrial base, including recent announcements of tens of thousands of job losses around Gatwick airport and 6,000 redundancies at Rolls Royce beginning in Derby, Inchinnan near Glasgow and in Lancashire. ‘Rolls Royce and British Airways have both taken public money on the pretext of saving jobs and should not be allowed now to cut and run’, Communist Party trade union organiser Andy Bain commented.
‘Not only should there be broad-based community campaigns led by the unions and local trades councils to resist these devastating blows, but both companies should be returned to the public sector and protected in the public interest regardless of EU state aid rules’, he proposed.
CP assistant secretary for membership, Alex Gordon, reported that 105 new and prospective party members and 34 tutors had participated in ten online schools over the last weekend of May.