Workers' Weekly On-Line
Volume 50 Number 26, July 11, 2020 ARCHIVE HOME JBCENTRE SUBSCRIBE

Durham Miners' Gala 2020

The Necessity for Workers to Speak Out in Their
Own Name for Their Rights and the Rights of All!

The Durham Miners' Gala and Big Meeting, which takes place on the second Saturday in July, was cancelled by the Durham Miners' Association (DMA) for 2020 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Taking up their responsibility to the working class and people, the DMA decision was made early in March to relieve vital public services and organisers from planning for the Gala and the event itself so that these services and organisers could fully concentrate on keeping people safe during the crisis in the months leading up to this year's event. However, the DMA also declared that "the Gala will return, bigger and better than ever, in 2021 - its 150th anniversary year". The DMA is calling on people not to come to Durham this year in large numbers but to stay safe and instead access their online event. The Saturday, July 11 live event will begin at 1pm on Facebook [1] and YouTube [2].

The Durham Miners' Gala is one of most remarkable manifestations in the calendar of the working class movement in Britain that brings people out in their thousands for "our day in Durham", which is inexorably linked to the aims, struggles and sacrifices of the working class itself over 135 Gala days and Big Meetings. This defence of the unity of the working class and people's movements and their communities is reinforced as the Gala parade carries before it banners inscribed with the words and deeds of generations of miners and the working class to defend their rights, to uphold proletarian internationalism, and for the emancipation of labour and to build socialism.

On this day, the working class and people strive to reflect their own independent politics for a future of society where they end the ruling elite's present hallucinations of a Britain dominating the world with their blood-stained flag of "making Britain Great again" at the expense of the well-being and lives of the people at home and abroad.

Today, the issue facing the working class and people is how to bring their initiative into play when they are excluded from political decision-making. A different direction for the economy is required, for limiting the power of the monopolies to impose their will and their dictate. At this time, the need is to counter the anti-social control exercised by those who are using the coronavirus lockdown to justify massive redundancies and to try to pacify the workers and block their resistance.

The necessity is for workers to speak out in their own name for their rights and the rights of all. This is workers acting, organising and speaking out in this present crisis for their livelihoods, safety, health and life and an end to the ruling elite's racist colonial legacy that it uses in its attempt to divide them. The task is one of building a new independent workers' opposition for its own alternative political programme and for justice and peace at home and abroad.

Build the Workers' Opposition and Work for People's Empowerment!
Fight for an Anti-War Government!

[1] The Second Saturday in July: a Durham Miners' Gala celebration.

[2] Join us for an online celebration of the Durham Miners' Gala.


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