Update March 2021
Eastbourne Unite Community first set up in November 2017. Since then, we have been an active campaigning body in Eastbourne in various ways.
Before the pandemic we regularly held street stalls both in our own right and in cooperation with other local groups including:- Eastbourne People’s Assembly; East Sussex Saves the NHS; The Eastbourne Trades Council (Workers Memorial Day, May Day and Eastbourne Pride).
Issues we covered are:- Stop and Scrap Universal Credit; how Universal Credit adversely affects women; child poverty in Eastbourne; the NHS; Policing cuts; Stop Zero Contract Hours. After the murderous attacks on the New Zealand, Christchurch mosques in March 2019, our group contributed to the town’s response of showing solidarity with Muslims. This was the sell-out Eastbourne United Nations Association Cultural Diversity Event at the Town Hall. As one of the speakers, EUC spoke out about challenging racism in our Town (in line with Unite Community’s campaign to oppose the rise of the far right).
Unite Community Eastbourne has been very active during the pandemic. Campaigning has mainly been online and has included:- #NoCovidEvictions (our Twitter storm trended 3rd); #PayMore4All and the Extend the £20 Universal Credit Uplift; keep free TV licenses for over 75s.
EUC has also been out on the street when Covid-19 rules permitted. We supported the East Sussex Save the NHS Campaign to keep the Station Walk in Centre open gathering 5000 plus signatures for the petition largely via street rallies. We took part in a socially distant protest at the Town Hall hosted by Eastbourne People’s Assembly’s demonstration #WeWon’tPay for the Pandemic.
We are currently working with Eastbourne Stand Up To Racism, planning for the official launch of this group to coincide with the United Nations Elimination of Racial Discrimination Day on 21st March.
Unite’s Political Strategy includes union members becoming active in the Labour Party both at a local and a national level. To this end, EUC have had a Union Rep on the CLP Executive Committee since 2018. EUC have been raising the profile of union issues by writing various articles for the CLP website, the CLP newsletter, and for social media e.g.:- on Equal Pay; Women and the Economy; Waspi Women; Clause 4; Unite Community Political School; an outline of the Labour Party Affiliated Unions and more.
Other work includes:- EUC is continuing to work on the Engels in Eastbourne Campaign. An online Radical History walk is being prepared, which will be uploaded onto google map courtesy of the Eastbourne Pilgrimage Project; the continuing work on the International Worker’s brochure; the Sussex Brigaders Project.