Friday, 4 January 2013

Candle-lit Vigil Outside Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Bath, calling for Justice for Factory Fire Victims in Bangladesh

Candle-lit, Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Bath 19 December 2012
On 24 November 2012, a fire swept through the Tazreen factory in Bangladesh, leaving at least 120 workers dead and injuring 150 more. The factory, which produces clothes for Edinburgh Woollen Mill amongst other companies, did not have a valid safety certificate. Due to showing indifference to the tragedy and refusing to take responsibility for their role in the disaster, Labour Behind the Label organised three candle-lit vigils, in Bath, Edinburgh and Stamford.

Around 10 people turned up to the Bath demo on 19th December 2012, including members of Labour Behind the Label, BARF and Occupy Bath, braving the cold (and the wind, which kept blowing out the candles). As well as the physical presence, literature was distributed and demonstrators spoke to many members of the public that stopped to talk.

Labour Behind the Label's write-up of the three demos can be found here:

You can send a letter to the companies that have dealings with the factory, demanding justice for victims of the fire, here:

Starbucks Tax Avoidance Demo in Bath

Demo outside Starbucks, High St, Bath, 8 December 2012
The huge multinational coffee chain Starbucks recently made headlines when it was reported that they have not paid corporation tax in three years... despite being, well, a huge multinational world-fucking coffee chain. Following a public outcry, Starbucks offered to pay a token amount of tax and attempted to make out that they make little profit in the UK. That they are in a position where they can themselves dictate how much tax they can pay, whereas smaller businesses have little or no choice but to pay the full amount is an unfortunate symptom of the this hyper-capitalist society promoted by whatever mainstream party the population gets brainwashed into voting into power by Murdoch et al. (seriously - remember the headline "It's the Sun wot won it"? They even admit to supporting parties that have no fucking interest in the well-being of the majority of the population. Burn every copy on sight - Ed). What's more, Starbucks stated that they intend to take out it out on their workers by cutting their employee benefits. Having perused a copy of a revised contract, I can confirm that this is the case. In response to this, UK Uncut announced a day of action for 8 December 2012.

Well, like most big issues, the switched on residents of Bath decided to take things into their own hands. Yet again, a coalition of activists from various groups (as well as non affiliated individuals), including BARF, Occupy Bath, Bath Anti-Cuts Alliance, Socialist Worker Party and others set up shop outside our local branch on the High Street. Armed with a huge urn filled with hot water, cups, spoons, fairtrade tea and coffee and soya milk, as well as two huge banners, we not only showed our discontent, but actively subverted their business by giving away free hot beverages.

More info on national demos here:

BARF write-up here:

Bath Chronicle article here: