TUC: "Deep rapid cuts are not the best way to solve our problems"
A national march for an alternative to cuts will be held on 26th March. The march is organised by the TUC in response to the government’s programme of fast and deep public spending cuts.
The TUC is expecting in excess of 100,000 people at the march, making it the biggest TUC-organised march for over 20 years.
“Government spending cuts will damage public services and put more than a million out of work. They will hit the vulnerable, damage communities and undermine much of what holds us together as a society,” TUC says.
Unlike the ministers who say there is no alternative to cuts, TUC holds that the alternatives are there.
The TUC’s March for the Alternative is meant to give a national voice to all those affected by the cuts. “This will be a huge event that in its breadth and support shows just how much opposition there is to the government’s programme. It will bring together public service workers and those who depend on good public services. Those involved in national campaigns, and those defending what is special in their own community,” TUC says.
The march is also meant to show that people reject the argument that there is no alternative. “Of course the recession did damage to our economy,” TUC says, “but these deep rapid cuts are not the best way to solve our problems, and may well make them worse. That is why it is the March for the Alternative – an alternative in which rich individuals and big companies have to pay all their tax, that the banks pay a Robin Hood tax and on in which we strain every sinew to create jobs and boost the sustainable economic growth that will generate the prosperity which is the only long term way to close the deficit and reduce the nation’s debt.”
The march will form up at around 11am on the Victoria Embankment and will move off from midday, heading through central London and into Hyde Park via the Apsley gate, where the rally will start from around 1.30pm.
People wanting to find out whether there is transport to the march from their town or city can do so by visiting the cuts campaign website www.falseeconomy.org.uk/themarch
The TUC March for the Alternative will be marshalled by over 2,000 stewards and will have a family-friendly atmosphere, with a children’s tent in Hyde Park organised by the Woodcraft Folk and at least ten marching bands playing a mix of music from samba to bangra and traditional brass.
TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: “No-one voted for culling frontline services or cuts that hit the poorest the hardest, so there is understandable anger at the government’s slash and burn policies and growing support for the TUC march.
“From parents and pupils worried about school rebuilding work being cancelled to people worried about their local Sure Start centre or library closures, anti-cuts protests have sprung up in every part of the UK. The TUC is bringing these protests together on 26 March in a broad based coalition against the cuts.”
Information about the march, including a map of the route, suggestions about how to get involved in the march, downloadable flyers and posters, and setting out the TUC’s economic alternative to the cuts is available at www.marchforthealternative.org.uk