Despite police ‘protection’ and a rival Paisleyite meeting, Belfast branch of the World Socialist Party of Ireland held their May Day meeting on Sunday May 4. The Paisleyites said they were holding a religious service nearby to protest about a political meeting on a Sunday, but their meeting turned out to be political too with attacks on Harold Wilson and talk of Ulster’s ‘great Protestant leader,’ then in jail. Despite having loudspeaker equipment they gave up before the Socialist meeting closed.
The previous day, WSP members had distributed socialist literature at the Labour and trade union march. Among the other leaflets handed out was one from the People’s Democracy headed Workers’ Civil Rights which seemed to advocate the extension of contracting-out to trade unions in Northern Ireland, where (quite reasonably) those who want to pay the political levy to the Labour Party have to say:
“The 1927 Trades Disputes Act was never repealed in Northern Ireland. This meant that Trade Union funds cannot be donated to the Labour Party unless a worker ‘contracts in’. In Great Britain, Trade Union Funds can be used to affiliate to the Labour Party unless the worker ‘contracts out’.”
Perhaps the Northern Ireland Labour Party is short of cash and is using its members in PD to whitewash the undemocratic contracting-out swindle.