Get Red Pepper's email newsletter. Enter your email address to receive our latest articles, updates and news.

×

Keep Radical, and Carry On: The Cuts Cafe

Cuts Cafe opens its doors on October 5th, Ewa Jasiewicz explains what will be happening in the cafe.

September 29, 2012
3 min read


Ewa JasiewiczEwa Jasiewicz is a Palestine solidarity activist, union organiser and part of the editorial collective of Le Monde Diplomatique Polish Edition.


  share     tweet  

Inspired by occupied spaces such as the Leeds Cuts Cafe, Manchester’s OK Cafe and the recent Palestine Place in London. Cuts Cafe’s call out states: The government tells us that cuts to public services and social security are needed to save an economy in crisis, but in reality the crisis is capitalism. For the two weeks leading up to the Trade Union Congress demonstration on October 20th, Cuts Cafe will provide a radical space in Central London to build resistance to these devastating cuts, and to explore the real alternatives to austerity.

Already youth groups, disabled activists, anti-cuts, union and community organisers have registered workshops. Activists from Unite the Union, London Coalition Against Poverty, Sparks Rank and File, Disabled People Against the Cuts, The Blacklist Support Group, Boycott Workfare, Fuel Poverty Action, UKUncut, Move Your Money, Black Activists Rising Against the Cuts (BARAC), Compass, Stop the G8, Red Pepper and Radical London are taking part. More are getting in touch every day. The family of Sean Rigg, killed by police in 2008 will accompany Ken Fero’s film ‘Who Polices the Police?’ and legendary class-struggle film-maker Ken Loach will present his Miners Strike classic ‘Which Side Are You On?’

So why is this happening?

More space, more time, more interaction, organisation and joint struggle are needed between all groups and organisations, big and small, in resisting the co-ordinated corporate and government rescue of free-market capitalism using our labour and capital and attempting to crush our commons.

Cuts Cafe is about furthering the kind of resistance that allows us to reclaim our labour, our time, our housing, our bodies and our communities from relentless commodification and cuts. Its about finding and co-creating alternatives, strengthening solidarity and confronting the causes of austerity.

Spending time together, drinking tea together, decorating, cleaning, talking and taking direct action builds trust and organisation which we need now more than ever. Cuts Cafe is a safe space open to anyone. For those who’d like to dismiss this as ‘another leftie talking shop’ – think again, the organisers are diverse and participating groups broad. And also, we need talking. And planning and sharing to sustain our resistance. Popping up in an unexpected central London space also means many non-aligned passersby will be welcomed inside.

We’d like to see Cuts Cafes emerge all over the country, particularly when our right to squat empty property has been banned for the first time in history, and cuts to libraries and other community resources are constricting our space to meet and organise. Never underestimate the potency of a few cups of tea, new knowledge and strangers becoming friends. If you want to get involved see cutscafelondon.wordpress.com.

Cuts Cafe will be having a public meeting with DPAC, UKUncut and the Greater London Pensioners Association on October 1st at Unite the Union’s HQ, 128 Theobalds Road, London.

Red Pepper is an independent, non-profit magazine that puts left politics and culture at the heart of its stories. We think publications should embrace the values of a movement that is unafraid to take a stand, radical yet not dogmatic, and focus on amplifying the voices of the people and activists that make up our movement. If you think so too, please support Red Pepper in continuing our work by becoming a subscriber today.
Why not try our new pay as you feel subscription? You decide how much to pay.
Share this article  
  share on facebook     share on twitter  

Ewa JasiewiczEwa Jasiewicz is a Palestine solidarity activist, union organiser and part of the editorial collective of Le Monde Diplomatique Polish Edition.


Labour Party laws are being used to quash dissent
Richard Kuper writes that Labour's authorities are more concerned with suppressing pro-Palestine activism than with actually tackling antisemitism

Catalan independence is not just ‘nationalism’ – it’s a rebellion against nationalism
Ignasi Bernat and David Whyte argue that Catalonia's independence movement is driven by solidarity – and resistance to far-right Spanish nationalists

Tabloids do not represent the working class
The tabloid press claims to be an authentic voice of the working class - but it's run by and for the elites, writes Matt Thompson

As London City Airport turns 30, let’s imagine a world without it
London City Airport has faced resistance for its entire lifetime, writes Ali Tamlit – and some day soon we will win

The first world war sowed the seeds of the Russian revolution
An excerpt from 'October', China Mieville's book revisiting the story of the Russian Revolution

Academies run ‘on the basis of fear’
Wakefield City Academies Trust (WCAT) was described in a damning report as an organisation run 'on the basis of fear'. Jon Trickett MP examines an education system in crisis.

‘There is no turning back to a time when there wasn’t migration to Britain’
David Renton reviews the Migration Museum's latest exhibition

#MeToo is necessary – but I’m sick of having to prove my humanity
Women are expected to reveal personal trauma to be taken seriously, writes Eleanor Penny

Meet the digital feminists
We're building new online tools to create a new feminist community and tackle sexism wherever we find it, writes Franziska Grobke

The Marikana women’s fight for justice, five years on
Marienna Pope-Weidemann meets Sikhala Sonke, a grassroots social justice group led by the women of Marikana

Forget ‘Columbus Day’ – this is the Day of Indigenous Resistance
By Leyli Horna, Marcela Terán and Sebastián Ordonez for Wretched of the Earth

Uber and the corporate capture of e-petitions
Steve Andrews looks at a profit-making petition platform's questionable relationship with the cab company

You might be a centrist if…
What does 'centrist' mean? Tom Walker identifies the key markers to help you spot centrism in the wild

Black Journalism Fund Open Editorial Meeting in Leeds
Friday 13th October, 5pm to 7pm, meeting inside the Laidlaw Library, Leeds University

This leadership contest can transform Scottish Labour
Martyn Cook argues that with a new left-wing leader the Scottish Labour Party can make a comeback

Review: No Is Not Enough
Samir Dathi reviews No Is Not Enough: Defeating the New Shock Politics, by Naomi Klein

Building Corbyn’s Labour from the ground up: How ‘the left’ won in Hackney South
Heather Mendick has gone from phone-banker at Corbyn for Leader to Hackney Momentum organiser to secretary of her local party. Here, she shares her top tips on transforming Labour from the bottom up

Five things to know about the independence movement in Catalonia
James O'Nions looks at the underlying dynamics of the Catalan independence movement

‘This building will be a library!’ From referendum to general strike in Catalonia
Ignasi Bernat and David Whyte report from the Catalan general strike, as the movements prepare to build a new republic

Chlorine chickens are just the start: Liam Fox’s Brexit trade free-for-all
A hard-right free marketer is now in charge of our trade policy. We urgently need to develop an alternative vision, writes Nick Dearden

There is no ‘cult of Corbyn’ – this is a movement preparing for power
The pundits still don’t understand that Labour’s new energy is about ‘we’ not ‘me’, writes Hilary Wainwright