Local Politics

Aviation bosses declare war on jobs, pay & conditions

There is no denying that aviation internationally has been hit by the Covid crisis. In Ireland, north and South, air- lines, airport authorities and the aircraft manufacturing and maintenance employers see this is as an opportunity to wage war on jobs, pay and working conditions. Bombardier jobs The announcement that 600 aerospace workers are set to lose their jobs at Bombardier’s Belfast site is a devastating blow to the region’s manufacturing sector.

Resist sectarian turf war

These are public spaces and people have the right to engage in cultural and sporting activities free from intimidation. This incident is one reflection of a process people across the North, particularly from working-class communities, will know all too well – the attempt to mark and claim territory. As is common, these actions can lead to tit-for-tat retaliation, with reports of young people attacking the small Protestant estate of Westland Drive. The marking of territory can lead to attacks to intimidate people out of areas, as one ‘mixed’ couple discovered recently in Coleraine.

Far right: New name, same game

In the course of this crisis, a new political party – the British Freedom Party – has distributed material in Belfast communities masquerading as a “Christian fellowship” and purporting to offer assistance to the vulnerable. In reality, this is a split from the far-right Britain First group and the new brand of their former leader, Jayda Fransen, and ex-councillor Jolene Bunting.

Education & childcare: Invest in safety and young people’s future

Arlene Foster announced that by reducing physical distancing for children from 2m to 1m, all children would be able to attend full-time from September. This was branded “unrealistic and undeliverable” by Graham Gault, the NI Vice-President of the National Association of Head Teachers.