Speech at Unite Against Facism rally 27th June 2009
I was shocked that BNP won 2 seats in the European elections, one in Y&H
Glad that we beat them into sixth place in Sheffield
As a Green Cllr, I do not want them to win seats in local elections.
It is important that the public know the BNP is racist.
Everyone here is part of a larger movement for social justice.
The biggest divide is not between white and black, but between rich and poor.
The biggest threat is not one small racist party, but the failure of our
national and international leaders to create a world in which resources are used wisely and shared fairly so we can all live in peace and security.
The world they have created is one where fear and racism flourish.
Our task is to spell out our vision for a different world.
Everyone here will have a view on how to get there – mine is via the Green Party … (plug) …Come to the Green Fair at St Mary’s on Bramall Lane this afternoon to find out more.
Events which have shocked me in recent days:
1. During turf wars in my own area of Broomhall, a woman stood up at a community meeting and blamed the most recent immigrants for taking all the housing.
2. At meetings at Abbeydale Grange School, which is fighting for its
future, I heard that they have had no extra help from the council despite the fact that many of their pupils are new arrivals to this country, often traumatised and learning English from scratch
3. Yesterday the Star carried the news of massive job losses at Corus in Stocksbridge and Rotherham. Hundreds of white skilled working men, traditional Labour voters, will be unemployed and deeply disillusioned.
Shall I blame that woman for the lack of social housing?
Shall I blame those teachers for the government’s inflexible attainment targets?
Shall I blame those workers for this government’s failure to invest in
public works such as railways and housing and renewable energy which would boost the steel industry?
In the UK
The richest 1% of households hold more than 20% of Britain’s wealth.
Minority ethnic groups, lone parents and people without formal
qualifications are twice as likely to be unemployed.
A quarter of pensioners live in poverty.
Inequalities have got worse under 11 years of Labour government
In the world
The richest 2% of adults own more than half of all household wealth
Half the world – more than 3 billion people – live on less than £1.50 a day
Is it any wonder that people are disillusioned and fearful and susceptible to blaming each other?
What can we do to reverse this terrible injustice?
This is not the place to set out the Green Party’s manifesto – everyone here will have their own ideas of what should be done.
Suffice it to say that we would:
· regulate the banks, tax the rich, stop projects such as Trident, ID
cards and the war in Afghanistan
· invest in public works which would create jobs and save the planet
So, yes, it is right that we expose the racism of the BNP and urge people not to be fooled by their false promises.
But we must also be clear about our alternative vision for a fairer, more sustainable world where we can live together in peace and security.
Cllr Jillian Creasy, Sheffield Green Party