Updated: Sep 28
Above. Supporters from Indian Workers' Association, IWA and Socialist Labour Party, SLP West Midlands Region, in support of action to save Birmingham's heritage for future generations.
This evening, 25th September, a meeting of BIrmingham Council was being held to discuss the way ahead following a declaration that it was not able to balance its books as a result of equal pay claims for women dating back years. It was announced that Michael Gove would be sending in a team to run the Council. Decisions had to be made. Unite, Unison and GMB were prominent among those anxious to save their members' jobs. The NEU took a lead by preparing a leaflet and promoting the event.
It is timely to remind BIrmingham citizens, Unions, City Councillors and others of the great victory the people of BIrmingham had in 1972 at the Batlle of Saltley Gate. 20,000 union members downed tools and marched to Saltley Gate where miners and other supporting unions picketing, heavily out numbered by police sent in from across the U.K. A then unknown miner, Arthur Scargill, took charge stopping the marchers in front of the gates. The Chief of Police had just assured the Home Secretary he had everything under control until this happened. He was forced to close the gate to stop coke stocks going in or out. Scargill held a victory rally, the subject of a mural held at South and City College at Digbeth depicting the scene with him standing on top of the urinals to address the crowd. A consequence was the downfall of the Heath Government in 1974. People power works and can do so again now. We must take courage and refuse to allow BIrmingham to be sold.
Birmingham Post and Mail. https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/five-key-issues-behind-birmingham-27681215
John Tyrrell, SLP President 25/9/2023