Autonomous Notts have been teaming up with Stop G8 Nottingham and spreading the word about next years G8 which takes place in the UK.
First some of the leaflet (see below were distributed at the TUC demo in London at the weekend, and then today a handful of us spent the late morning and early afternoon handing out leaflets in the center of town encouraging people to come to the next Stop G8 Notts meeting at the Peacock on the 29th October at 7pm. Plenty of people were all “Stop Capitalism, fuck yeah lets do it”, so maybe we got a chance after all. We’ll be doing shit loads of leafletting over the coming months as we work with and alongside the Stop G8 Notts group. Distributing material which ties together the G8 and capitalisms role in everything from the struggles of people without papers to the struggles of the students, from environmental issues to those of austerity, from poverty to the pigs. It’s going to be a long and lengthy mobilization process to resist the G8 and an even longer one to build a movement which can stop capitalism and take us into a more beautiful world.
The last couple of weeks has seen Autonomous Nottingham teaming up with Notts Against Workfare and have been picketing the job centre on station street. We’ll be continuing with this over the next few months, once a week, striking at a different time and place like the flexible ninjas we are. The leaflets we’ve been distributing (see below) are intended as both practical solidarity offering some hints and tip so people don’t get screwed into workfare, but also a rallying cry. Now more than ever those of us who are precarious workers need to be coming together and acting in collective self-defence of our interests. We’ve seen too many Unions come out in support of workfare, which must make the rank and file question what the hell their leaders are up to. Workfare makes jobs that exist now less likely to exist in six months time, and a rise in precarious workers across the board a certainty. We’ve been having some good chats with our fellow dolees from the state of the job marke, to the sheer inherent evilness of Atos. It’s starting to get colder so next week we’ll handing out the teas and coffees as well as the leaflets.
There’s no set reading, but we’ve compiled a list of texts that have inspired us and we’ve uploaded them go here https://network23.org/autonomousnottingham/the-sunday-school/ to take a look.
Here’s the schedule for the antiprison gathering to be held in Nottingham at the Sumac Centre on the 28th of April.
Breakfast, Lunch and dinner will be provided, as will accommodation on Friday and Saturday night.
On Friday night the Zounds http://www.zoundsonline.co.uk/gigs.html will be playing at the Sumac, so come along to that if you can.
In the morning
Introduction to Anti-Capitalist perspectives on the prison system. Presentation by Autonomous Nottingham.
The Industrial Prison Complex- Privatization and the profiteers. Presentation by Corporate Watch.
Dissemination of anti-prison ideas- How can we spread the struggle, connect it to the growing social struggle. Open Discussion.
In the afternoon
Individual Cases of Repression and how they link up to the wider context. Short presentation by NDC, with space for other groups to talk on specific examples.
Detention Centers and how they connect to wider prisoner struggles- presentation by No Borders London
Solidarity is our weapon- Solidarity actions, What do they mean? What are they for? How will they spread? What can we learn from the last two years of more generalized struggle? How can antagonism against the prison industry help us further this struggle? O
March 22nd at the Sumac Centre, starts 8pm finishes at 10pm.
Coal is still a massive issue in the UK – despite some victories against opencast mines and both Scottish Coal and UK Coal being on the brink of collapse, more and more coal is burned and mined every day. This is disastrous for communities and ecosystems, but capitalism’s dependence on cheap and dirty fossil fuels means that the struggle must continue!
In the Douglas Valley, South Lanarkshire, the UK’s largest opencast mining company Scottish Coal is pressing forward with new mine proposals in a desperate smash and grab of what’s left of the valley. Their puppets at South Lanarkshire Council have just approved a new massive 4 million tonne mine at Glentaggart East, close to 4 existing mines and a stones throw away from two primary schools.
Spring into action in the coming months with Coal Action Scotland!
Autonomous Nottingham presents six weeks of street play in Forest Fields. One of the key principals to Autonomous Nottingham is engagement with it’s community, another is an effort to show solidarity to those who are marginalised by the state and capitalism, We also believe in unlearning the spirit crushing atomization and individualization of everyday life, and the relearning of loving, sharing and coming together within shared spaces. It’s with these ideas in mind that some of us have decided to once more take to the streets to play with the local kids.
Having learnt a couple of the lessons learned from the much derided Sumac Kids Club which led to the occasional moments of feral chaos, but also to long term connections with children and their parents around the Forest Fields area. We are going to be running six play sessions to start with, each one on thursday between 4:30 and 6:30. And perhaps we’ll do some more after that.
As the government has shown itself to think nothing of the marginalisation of young working class people whatever their age, race, or religion, it becomes more important then ever to engage with them. Not as a way teaching them good politics, but in order to keep their playfulness, their creativity and their uniqueness alive. If they are encouraged to value these aspects of themselves above the characteristics of servitude, selfishness, prescribed gender taught to them by this capitalist society, then they will want to defend them as they get older.
It’s also with engaging with the young people around us, that we remember to value the playful, joyful aspects of ourselves, and are reminded once again of what life could be like outside of this patriarchal, capitalist and white supremacist culture.
Despite the freezing cold Autonomous Nottingham hit the road to travel down the A46 to Morton Hall Immigration Removal Centre, to hold a solidarity noise demo with those imprisoned by this countries cruel and abusive government. With a sound system pumping out revolutionary hip hop, pots, pans, xylophones, air horns and our gobs we made a racket as circled the prisons perimeter. Those inside sent us text messages to let us know that our noise was heard inside, and some prisoners waved from their cell windows as we stood outside. We put up with a minor irritation in the form of a single little piggie, and headed home vowing to return in the near future. Whilst there are those who are kept behind bars by the state then it remains imperative for those on the outside to show solidarity and support in every way.
Morton Hall was formerly a prison for female foreign national prisoners but has now been converted to an immigration removal centre for male detainees. It is run by HM Prison Service in collaboration with the UK Border Agency. Less than 30 miles from Nottingham it is the only detention centre in the East Midlands.
Immigration detainees can be held indefinitely, as detention is not automatically reviewed by the courts, and many end up in these prisons for years. None of them are being detained as punishment for a crime. Most detainees are asylum seekers whose claims have been refused. Other people are waiting to find out if they will be allowed to stay in Britain or are waiting to be returned to their countries of origin. Many experience extreme isolation and distress, knowing no-one in the UK and with very limited understanding of the language, law, their rights and entitlements. Many people have already been traumatised by their experiences in their home country and are further scarred when they find themselves detained with no release date, and by the prospect of being forcibly returned.
Instances of racism, brutality and neglect in detention centres are rife. In 2009 two guards at immigration detention centres were found to be members of the fascist British National Party. Last year a guard at Yarl’s Wood IRC was fired after a detainee became pregnant whilst in detention. The denial of medical treatment is commonplace in detention centres. Examples include denying wheelchair access to a detainee unable to walk after an assault during a forced removal attempt, which meant that she couldn’t go to eat. Denial of medication to patients with health problems is common. For example HIV positive detainees have been denied access to anti-retroviral drugs whilst in detention. A Kenyan detainee, Eliud Nguli Nyenze, died in Oakington IRC last year after an ambulance called for him by detainees was turned away by staff.
According to the rules regarding detention, victims of torture and people with psychiatric conditions are not suitable for detention. However, these regulations are routinely ignored. Indeed, the experience of detention can exacerbate or precipitate poor mental health. Ahmad Javani, an Iranian national detained for over thirteen months comments: ‘If any single normal person came to this place you’d go mental, mad in this place. I was a normal person before coming to this place, and now, I’m forgetting things always. Like old people that forget things. I can’t understand, I’m not the same person. I’m a different person. Who gives this power to them to keep these people here for years and years and years, to make them mental and crazy?’ Levels of self-harm and suicide attempts in detentions are high.
This inhuman system has resulted in a huge amount of misery and many people have died in UK detention centres over the years.
In the face of the degrading conditions they are subject to and often with no idea of how long their incarceration will last, struggles from within detention centres are commonplace but are frequently misrepresented by mainstream media. Detainees have been on hunger strike and rioted to show their outrage. People who speak out against their treatment are generally subject to further punishment. For example Denise McNeil, who went on hunger strike in February 2010 and was then moved from Yarl’s Wood IRC to Holloway prison.
There are also groups on the outside committed to working to end the detention of migrants and support people who find themselves trapped in the system. The Association of Visitors to Immigration Detainees lists visitors groups across the country that support detainees. No Borders campaigns for the end of border controls and supports detainees organising from within detention centres to challenge their treatment.