#noTTIP campaigners join in the People’s Assembly march on June 20
– and warn that TTIP means permanent austerity
June 20 2015 saw the biggest set of protest marches in recent years take place in Glasgow, Liverpool, Bristol, and London. Organisers from the Peoples Assembly Against Austerity reckon that over 250, 000 people marched on Saturday to protest against the UK government’s punitive austerity measures. The huge London march spread out over a mile, following a route from the Bank of England in the City, the site of the UK financial centre, to Parliament Square, the seat of the UK’s democratic institutions. Teachers, nurses, lawyers and campaign and union groups marched under their own banners. There were some militant animal rights activists and anarchists who threw smoke canisters, which enlivened proceedings whilst causing problems for asthmatics on the march.
Speakers at the rally in Parliament Square included Caroline Lucas, Charlotte Church, Jeremy Corbyn and Russell Brand, who, like the marchers, denounced public sector cuts, the treatment of the disabled and the vulnerable through welfare cuts, and the privatisation of the NHS.
A group of #noTTIP and StopTTIP campaigners together with members of People Before Profit made their stand along the route outside no 70 Fleet St, the site of a secret ISDS/ICSID arbitrational court dedicated to furthering the interests of transnational corporations above those of democratically elected governments and their electorates.
Our group of activists handed out 5000 leaflets and 2000 copies of noTTIP times explaining that under TTIP and its own dedicated pro-corporate legal system, privatisation and austerity will be legally locked in, permanently. Many of the marchers were keen to take our leaflets, giving us hope that the TTIP message is getting through.
Our efforts were greatly supported by the Strawberry Thieves Socialist choir with their fine repertoire of anti-TTIP songs including “Don’t Fence Me In”