Saturday 19 January - TCAR Northern March Against Racism

Saturday 19 January - TCAR Northern March Against Racism

Approximately 150 people took part in a militant anti-racist demonstration organised by Tyneside Community Action for Refugees (TCAR) from the West End of Newcastle to the City Centre on 19 January, demanding Freedom to Work, Freedom to Stay, and an end to the criminalisation of immigrants, the end of the NASS system and decent housing for all.



TCAR campaigns in support of asylum seekers' rights and against policies which divide the working class by inciting British people to blame immigrants for cuts in services and lack of access to housing instead of blaming the Labour government which is making the cuts and which attacks all the poor in this country, immigrant and native.

Marchers included asylum seekers from Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Cote d'Ivoire, Malawi, Kurdistan and elsewhere. Several people who, with the help of TCAR, have successfully fought the government's attempts to deport them came to show their support for those still confronting the racist British government's asylum and immigration policies, including Joy Bowman, whose campaign against her deportation to Jamaica received national publicity, and Kurdish asylum seeker Guler Akdogan, who learned in December that her long fight against the deportation of her family to Turkey had been successful.

The demo stopped outside the Government Offices North East where speakers from TCAR and the UDPS opposition party from DRC spoke about the mistreatment of asylum seekers and immigrants in Britain. People whose only 'crime' is to flee oppression or poverty are criminalised, detained and deported. Those who are waiting the outcome of decisions on their cases are banned from working, which means they are further criminalised if they then do work illegally, while ironically becoming the butt of media abuse for not working and 'scrounging off the state'.

Speakers at the end rally at Grey's Monument included TCAR, Newcastle Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!/Revolutionary Communist Group, North West Asylum Seekers' Defence Group, South Yorkshire Migration and Asylum Action Group, Support the Harmondsworth 4 Campaign, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Tyneside Stop the War, the University and College Lecturers' Union, Tyneside Socialist Forum and International Federation of Iraqi Refugees. MC Drop Dead Fred performed some political raps for fellow protesters. Many more people spoke and there was always a long queue of people waiting to use the open mic.



The demo was also attended by contingents from Durham, Carlisle, Doncaster, Sheffield, Manchester, Middlesborough, Glasgow and Leeds and by members and supporters of No Borders, Antifa, Amnesty International and the Socialist Workers Party. At a time when political campaigners across the country are facing police harassment and restrictions on their right to protest, it was great to see the Monument covered in banners and surrounded by protesters.

The police originally tried to impose restrictions on the date and route of the march but they backed down. In the end the police imposed conditions that were identical to the agreed route. This meant the march had to stick to agreed times for setting off and dispersing, so although it was a victory for TCAR, the right to protest was still restricted. In addition, two arrests were made on the demonstration. The two activists arrested had previously been dragged out of the march on the route. The police liasion intervened and other demonstrators refused to 'just move on' as ordered by the police. Later the two activists were approached again and asked for their details. The officer referred to chants they had been singing. They refused their details. Witnesses heard the arresting officer say that she didn't intend to report the activists, she just wanted their names 'for intelligence purposes'. When they continued to refuse to give their details the activists were arrested. The police liaison organised a phone-in of the police station. The activists were released later in the day.

Get involved in TCAR! For anyone that wants to get involved in TCAR, the email is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The next General Meeting is on Saturday 26th January at St Thomas' Church, Newcastle. The meeting starts at 1pm. TCAR particularly needs people to get involved in its press group and newsletter group.



to find this report on indymedia, click here 

Sunday 27 April - RCG FUND RAISER!

Sunday 27 April - RCG FUND RAISER!

Comrades and supporters of the Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! newspaper took part in a sponsored walk on 27 April to raise money for the RCG’s continuing work in building an anti-imperialist and working class movement in Britain. 13 people from Manchester walked the famous Kinder Scout route in the Peak District, the scene of a historic mass trespass in 1932, involving many communists, which led to the land becoming a public right of way. During the 12 mile walk, which lasted nearly seven hours, the comrades carried flags from the USSR, Palestine, Cuba and Bolivia in a gesture of solidarity with the socialist and progressive struggles taking place across the world. The walk marked the beginning of FRFI’s national £10,000 fund-drive. Get in touch if you want to make a donation or take part in a fundraising event.





 

Saturday 25 October - TCAR's Northern March Against Racism! Newcastle!

Saturday 25 October - TCAR's Northern March Against Racism! Newcastle!

On 25th October the 2nd Northern March Against Racism, called by TCAR (Tyneside Community Action for Refugees), took the message of anti-racism, working class solidarity and internationalism to the streets of Newcastle. Anti-racists from Jarrow to Carlisle, Sunderland to Durham, Zimbabwe to the Czech Republic, DRCongo to Iraq, young and old, employed and unemployed, chanted together: “Unemployment and inflation are not caused by immigration – Rubbish, come off it, the enemy is profit!”

The march had been planned since July, but had become all the more important following the intensification of the economic crisis and the further deepening of racism indicated by the appointment of Phil Woolas as Immigration Minister, who has stated that the government has been ‘too soft’ on immigration in the past, and that he has been brought in to take a harder line.



Marching from the West End to Grey’s Monument the protestors demanded decent living conditions for all. As the march passed the offices of Angel Group, who make millions of pounds every year by providing substandard and unsafe accommodation to asylum seekers on government contracts, chants of “Angel Group – Devil Group!” rang out. On Stanhope Street passers-by showed their support for the march by buying TCAR’s newsletter, ‘Resistance’.

As the protestors arrived at Grey’s Monument they were confronted by a counter-protest of around 20 fascists from the National Front and Combat 18, holding a banner reading: ‘Stop Immigration – Start Repatriation’. The police stood by and allowed them to continue with their open racism for some time before politely asking them to move on, with a police sergeant standing chatting and laughing with the fascists. Their chants and insults were drowned out by the united chanting of the anti-racists, joined by many passers-by.

The street meeting following the march went ahead despite intimidation, visibly from the fascists and from behind the scenes by the police and council. First the police had claimed that they couldn’t ‘accommodate’ the march due to the Sunderland-Newcastle Derby on the same day. When TCAR informed them that we had no need to be ‘accommodated’ and that the march would go ahead regardless, they backed down. They then threatened that as they did not consider the rally to constitute a ‘meeting in the open air’ they would not allow donations to be taken without a permit. Both council and police have refused to define what they do consider to constitute a meeting. In the face of concerted opposition on this point the police also backed down, and took no action on the day.

Speakers included representatives from TCAR, Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! and a number of other groups.

Speaking at the rally Sam Magill from Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! pointed to the roots of the current crisis in capitalism’s inherent contradictions, and the urgent necessity for socialism. She made the point that in order to rebuild a socialist movement in Britain it would be necessary to confront and destroy the Labour Party:

“The Labour party has waged bloody wars and attacked resistance movements internationally for nearly a century. If we are to change this then we must demand a total split from the Labour party. The millions and millions of people who are dying in countries like Congo; Iraq; Afghanistan from wars of economic plunder and the millions more dying from malnutrition and preventable diseases can’t afford to wait for us any longer. We need to build an internationalist movement today; a movement for socialism which can stand up against racism not only in this country but all over the world and demand a decent life for all! NOW!”

Other supporters of FRFI used the open forum to raise the question of Britain’s parasitic position in the world economy, and the fact that oppressed countries on which Britain’s wealth depends have been feeling the full effects of the crisis for a long time. They called out organisations on the left who are presently calling for government spending on ‘us’ instead of the banks, without questioning the source of Britain’s wealth. In Britain the logical direction of a ‘socialist’ movement which ignores Britain’s imperialist character is national socialism, or fascism.

TCAR will continue the struggle in Newcastle for all refugees’ and migrants’ rights. Contact us to get involved.



hear audio from the march here!
for the full audio, on indymedia, click here!

Together we are stronger!
Together we will win!

North East Events coming up..

We have street actions and political educational meetings in Newcastle every week – for details call 07858346276 or email frfinortheast@gmail.com

For more information on events in the North East you can also join the FRFI North East e-mail list and the mailing lists of campaigns we are involved in on the following pages:

Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! North East:
https://lists.riseup.net/www/subscribe/frfinortheast

Tyneside Community Action Against Racism:
https://lists.riseup.net/www/subscribe/tcar

Palestine Action Group:
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Viva Cuba! Rock Around The Blockade:
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