The continuing public sector strikes were a dominating theme in May Day demonstrations in Sweden and Denmark.
More than 100,000 nurses and health care workers are on strike in Denmark. In Sweden, the strike was stepped up on Monday 5 May, with now over 7,000 nurses and other health workers on strike. In Sweden, the social democratic speakers refused to support the strike, despite being in verbal opposition to the right-wing government. The leader of the nurses’ union, however, was as a speaker invited to the left demonstration in Stockholm, organised by the Left Party.
Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (CWI Sweden) organised and participated in demonstrations around the country.
400-500 participated in the march organised by Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna (RS). This reflects the growth of RS in Gothenburg. The established Left Party, in comparison, had 1,600 in their march. Stefan Berg, an activist in the trade union Kommunal, spoke for the need of fighting unions. Kristofer Lundberg raised the need for a socialist mass party for workers in his speech and Patricia Degerman was youth speaker for Elevkampanjen. Iranian, Iraqi and Kurdish socialists and communists participated in the march. More than 100 copies of our weekly paper, Offensiv, were sold in pouring rain.
”I’m working as a nurse and we have been in strike for two weeks.” That is how Per Johansson, speaker for Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna, introduced himself at the demonstration in Sundsvall. His main theme was the need for further mobilisations, not least of the massive support from other groups of workers.
Umeå: "Save health care for old and disabled"
United Left the biggest demo in town. Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna is a main organiser of the United Left marches on May Day in Umeå. 550 took part in the demo, making it bigger the social democracy’s and the Left Party’s demos together. Ingrid Eriksson, one of RS’ three councillors, was one the speakers, emphasising the need for struggle against social cuts and against the climate threat. RS in Umeå raised more than 4,000 SEK (400 euros) on May Day.
Stockholm: 250 people marched with Rättvisepartiet Socialisternas’ contingent in the left demonstration in Stockholm. Our main banner was support of the health care strike. We are also invited to a public meeting in the coming week: for a socialist response to the right-wing attacks, especially in housing. 350 copies of Offensiv were sold and almost 7,000 SEK (700 euros) collected.
Copenhagen: Striking workers, interviewed for Offensiv, weekly paper of CWI Sweden
Members from Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna in Sweden received a great response in Copenhagen, on May Day, selling 112 copies of Offensiv despite some heavy rain. People signed up for subscriptions to Offensiv and people were also interested in further discussions about our party. Over the next two days, RS comrades sold more than 200 papers in Malmö, south Sweden, across a bridge from Copenhagen.
Luleå: "No to privtasations and right-wing policies"
Council workers threatened with privatisation by the social democratic council in Luleå organised their own march on May Day, supported by Rättvisepartiet Socialisterna. 250 took part in this historic demo: about the same numbers as in the social democratic march. The Left Party also joined the anti-privatisation march. Jonas Brännberg, on of three RS councillors, got warm applause for his speech attacking privatisation and calling for a new workers’ party and socialist policies. New people took out subscriptions of the Offensiv paper on the demo.