A day of action against racism has been called across Europe to coincide with the marking of UN Anti-Racism Day in 2014, with eyes on the European elections in May. Already in most European countries parties of the right, centre and even the traditional left are allowing the terrain of these elections to be dominated by racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism and the scapegoating of minorities – Muslims, immigrants, Roma, Black and Asian communities. Across Europe the fascist and populist racist right are on the rise. In Britain the far right is hoping for gains in the Euro elections. The British National Party (BNP) is seeking the re-election of Nick Griffin in the North West and Andrew Brons is seeking re-election in Yorkshire and the Humber. The mainstream political parties look set to capitulate to UKIP in their calls for draconian ‘anti-immigration’ policies and promoting a ‘Little Englander’ anti-foreign, anti-Europe mentality. This all encourages currents like the English Defence League, which turn their Islamophobic prejudices into real attempts to terrorise the Muslim population.
The TUC and Unite Against Fascism has therefore initiated this call, supported by UNISON, for a demonstration and rally to Stand Up to Racism in London on Saturday 22nd March. Speakers and artists so far confirmed include Diane Abbott MP, Jerry Dammers and Ava Vidal. In Southampton Unite the Union has booked a coach leaving from the Unite office in The Avenue at 9am on 22nd March (getting back to Southampton about 7.30pm). If you are interested in booking a seat on the coach please contact Steve Squibbs on 07545 641003 giving your name, mobile number and e-mail address.