England & Wales: Socialist Party Congress 2013

Just over 300 delegates and visitors took part in a very successful Socialist Party annual congress in Clacton-on-Sea from 2 to 4 March.

The congress, the Socialist Party’s main decision-making body, showed a party deeply involved in and often leading working class struggle in the areas, workplaces and unions where members are based.

Congress provided the opportunity for delegates, elected by party members in branches throughout England and Wales, to discuss and vote on resolutions covering the main political issues in Britain today, and the work of the party. The enthusiasm to participate in this vital process was reflected in the numbers who wanted to contribute – with most sessions over-subscribed. Here we report on four of the sessions.

Resolutions and amendments had been submitted by the party’s national committee and by many of the branches. The resolutions agreed will serve as guidelines for the party’s work in the coming year. In keeping with our democratic traditions a national committee was elected to lead the work of the party in between this congress and the next.

Steve Score, regional secretary for the East Midlands, made the appeal for fighting fund and congress raised a very impressive £10,843. Sacrifice and commitment to the struggle for socialism and internationalism was again in evidence when Clare Doyle from the Committee for a Workers’ International, the CWI world socialist organisation to which the Socialist Party is affiliated, made an appeal for funds to support our sister organisation in South Africa. This raised over £5,000. Over £300 a month of increased monthly donations (party members’ subs) were also pledged.

A moving memorial tribute to Robbie Segal and Roger Mackay who died last year was made by Bill Mullins, former industrial organiser.

A visitor from Greece addressed Socialist Party congress 2013 Photo by Senan

Visitors from sister sections of the CWI in Greece, Scotland, and Ireland contributed to the debates. The congress concluded with a very inspiring report of the work of other sections of the CWI. With CWI members in 49 countries – CWI general secretary Tony Saunois couldn’t report on all of them – but his report touched on Europe, the US, Brazil, Pakistan and Tunisia, among many others.

To read more about the discussions at the conference, follow this link

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March 2013