Local Elections: No 2EU – Yes to Workers Rights, The Communist Party and UKIP

A Posting by Nigel Green

Croydon’s communists have welcomed the No2EU – Yes to Workers Rights challenge in the elections on Thursday for the European Parliament as a vital antidote to the reactionary and anti-foreigner poison of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP).

Communists have condemned UKIP as preying on people’s disillusionment with establishment politics and the European Union. As the Communist Party’s General Secretary Rob Griffiths has pointed out, UKIP leader and ex-City speculator Nigel Farage is a first-class passenger on the Brussels and Strasbourg gravy train who opposes trade union and employment rights, proposes further tax cuts for the rich and big business and wants to privatise the NHS.

UKIP supports the austerity and privatisation policies that have made 26 million people unemployed across Europe, but then cynically seeks to ‘whip up a vile wave of xenophobia’ to make workers in Britain fear for their jobs.

Also standing in the European elections, No2EU – Yes to Workers Rights will, on the other hand, be campaigning against austerity and privatisation, for public ownership and full employment, and for equal rights for all workers to ensure that employers can’t use cheap migrant labour to undercut wages, terms and conditions.

The No2EU electoral alliance comprises the RMT rail and transport union, the Communist Party, the Socialist Party, the Indian Workers Association and other progressive groups and individuals.

Croydon Communists alongside others in the local labour movement, will not allow UKIP, the BNP and the Tory right in our town to dominate anti-EU opinion with right-wing arguments. We oppose the EU as it is an anti-democratic big business club in which an unelected EU Commission and an unaccountable European Central Bank enforce neoliberal policies enshrined in EU treaties.

The international secretary of the Communist Party, John Foster, has warned, too, about the growing militarisation of the EU as the European pillar of NATO. John said ‘Led by the unelected president Jose Barroso and high commissioner Baroness Ashton, the EU has fuelled the drive eastwards to impose a new economic and military order on the peoples of the former socialist countries and Soviet republics’. Seventeen communist and left parties in Europe, including Die Linke in Germany, Portugal’s Left Bloc and the Danish Red-Green Alliance, have now signed a joint statement condemning the EU as ‘in essence neoliberal and militarist’ and therefore ‘unreformable’.

Calling for Britain’s exit from the EU because it is neoliberal and militarist is the Communist Party’s internationalist duty as well as a national necessity.

Nigel Green