Tamil Solidarity(TS) launched the general election campaign on 02-November 2019.
This meeting was held as part of Socialism 2019 – a weekend that consisted of debate and discussions organised by the Socialist Party. Hundreds of Socialists, Trade unionists, and other activists took part in this meeting.
The Meeting was chaired by Sathya a leading activist and one of the editors of Ethir papers. The discussion also comprised of Sen Kandiah Tamils for Labour, Mathan and Lawanya activists, national coordinating members, from TS and Refugee Rights.
The meeting was attended by very engaged crowd who ranged from various ethnicities including trade unionists from various unions, activists and members from TGTE. It was voiced out by many in the meeting that the Tamils living in the Uk should take an active approach into supporting Jeremy Corbyn policies that not only supports the benefits of the Tamil people living here but also back home.
Sen Kandiah from Tamils for Labour stressed the importance of Jeremy Corbyn policies. He shared the major points or the policies that affect the Tamil speaking people both in this country and also in Sri Lanka. Which will also be part of the Corbyn election manifesto.
The sale of weapons, military training and military assistance to Sri Lanka will cease under a Jeremy Corbyn led labour government. Manifesto also recognises as to what happened in Sri Lanka in 2009 as a genocide, push towards an international investigations into war crimes, the closing down of privately owned detention centres in the UK, NHS will be saved from privatisation, ending the practice of outsourcing vital health care sectors, reduce NHS waiting times, invest in infrastructure and building of affordable homes etc. These were many of the policies and promises made that were discussed.
Lawanya and Mathan speaking on behalf of the Refugee Rights campaign and Tamil Solidarity pointed out that refugees are not criminals and locking them up is inhumane. They spoke on the many challenges asylum seekers and refugees face on a daily basis. When the most vulnerable people who need all the help they can get are expected to pay horrendous amounts of money for lawyers and courts most of them go into severe depression and only makes their physical and mental being far worse off. They end up working as slave labour or even worse. This government does not care about the vulnerable people. The Law clinic conducted by Refugee Rights campaign (conducted by refugees themselves) has attracted lawyers from different firms willing to help asylum seekers and refugees with no recourse to public funding.
A personal witness testimony from a member who attended this meeting gave the current ground views on Sri Lanka. The views among the masses were shared to the crowd. The general issue is a social crisis in the Island. Not just the tamil youth but the sinhala youth are also suffering to total government mismanagement and its neoliberal policies. Issues such as how a united movement by the masses is key to securing a better future for the future generation was discussed.
The meeting also allowed for questions and information to be shared amongst all those who attended this meeting.