The Socialist Workers Party’s shameful cover-up of sexual assault, abuse and rape within the party has been detailed here and here. Not as bad as the decades of abuse perpetrated by Gerry Healy and others in the Workers Revolutionary Party, but very serious nevertheless.
The Socialist Workers Party have recently taken the lead in setting up another front organisation, called Stand Up To Racism. Those of us who know the SWP of old recognise the tactic. The SWP never involve themselves in anything unless they’re in a position to shape the agenda and make recruits. Given what happens to vulnerable young recruits in the SWP, should we be happy about this?
A number of speakers were invited to speak to its conference yesterday. A number of organisations involved in campaigning against racism and violence against women, including Black Lives Matter and Southall Black Sisters, made an appeal to those speakers to withdraw. A number of respected figures on the left, such as Owen Jones of the Guardian, did so. Jeremy Corbyn said he would, but didn’t.
Given that that people across the political spectrum are condemning Donald Trump’s justifications of sexual assault today, should the Labour Party Leader share a platform with an organisation that covers up rape? And should Diane Abbott, the Shadow Home Secretary, be chairing one of their events? Until they confront their grim history of covering up sex abuse, there’s no place for the SWP in broad-based campaigns against racism.