Brick Lane 1978: Photographs reveal hidden anti-racist history

Black Lives Matter (BLM) No Racism Notes

source: Socialist Worker
published: 11 June 2022

In this small but mighty exhibition, Paul Trevor’s collection of photographs capture a critical moment for the fight against racism in Britain. Brick Lane 1978: The Turning Point focuses on Bengalis living in the east end of London.

The fascist National Front casts a shadow over the area, and for Bengalis the threat of violence is ever-present. Smashed windows and swastikas can be seen throughout the pictures in the exhibition.

Continue reading

The Tories hand more powers to the cops in queen’s speech

Black Lives Matter (BLM) Protesterssource: Socialist Worker
published: 10 May 2022

The Tories unveiled yet more repressive measures in the queen’s speech on Tuesday. It’s an attempt to resurrect a set of crackdown powers that didn’t make it into the police bill that was passed recently. 

They include new offences to stop protesters “locking on” to infrastructure and an extension of stop and search powers. It will also become illegal to obstruct transport projects. It’s a direct threat to groups such as Extinction Rebellion, Insulate Britain and Just Stop Oil. But the cops and the state will use them far more widely.

Continue reading

No births behind bars: The scandal of imprisoning pregnant women

Woman in Prisonsource: Counterfire
published: 31 March 2022

Over the past three years, two babies born to women serving custodial sentences in prison have died. In 2019, a woman gave birth alone in a prison cell at HMP Bronzefield in Surrey, Europe’s largest women’s prison, without access to a midwife or any maternity care.

The baby was born in the early hours of the morning but by the time prison staff visited the woman’s cell the baby was unresponsive. The Prisons and Probation Ombudsman initially refused to investigate, claiming that such an investigation was not within their remit. Nine months later, another baby was stillborn at HMP Styal, to a woman who was unaware she was pregnant.

Questions are being raised once again over why pregnant women are incarcerated in the first place. Women make up about 5% of the prison population, with the vast majority – some 82% of the 7,745 women incarcerated in 2018 – sentenced for petty crimes and non-violent offences such as shoplifting.

Continue reading