Rutherglen and Hamilton West: SSP stands for people, not profit

The Scottish Socialist Party has confirmed that Bill Bonnar is standing as its candidate in the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election. Bill has pledged to be a socialist MP on an average local worker’s wage, and to fight for the interests of working-class people – not the profit of the billionaires and millionaires.

Bill Bonnar said:

“It’s time for radical, socialist change. The SSP shares the hunger of millions of working-class people of all ages for an immediate end to the ruinous, unwanted rule of the Tories, as they steal workers’ wages; the benefits of children, disabled and sick people, and keep our state pension at the worst level of any country in Europe.

“However, a vote for Labour or the SNP is a wasted vote. It would be a vote for more of the same poverty and inequality.

“Bitter experience has proven we can expect absolutely no change in the lives of local people from a Labour government led by Sir Keir Starmer. Tony Blair’s very first act when elected in 1997 was to demonise single parents and attack their benefits. Starmer’s Labour have made clear they are against abolition of the hated two-child benefits cap – which has stolen £341million from 80,000 Scottish kids and their families, stealing food from the mouths of children whilst feeding the profits and personal fortunes of the rich, with top company chief executives increasing their incomes by an average £500,000 each last year.

“Labour have declared they will not introduce a wealth tax. They will not abolish the bedroom tax.

“They will not take our railways or Royal Mail back into public ownership. They want even more privatisation of our cherished NHS – carrying on where Blair’s Labour left off, when they squandered public funds to feed the profits of bankers and moneylenders in PFI schemes to build hospitals. In the case of Wishaw General hospital, the public have to pay back £800m to the profiteers for a £100m building; forking out £8 for every £1 borrowed from private investors; depriving local people of £700m that could have been invested in staffing, bed spaces, and equipment to tackle the mounting waiting lists and delays in treatment in an NHS saddled with huge debt to the spivs and speculators.

“Labour have made it clear they will not repeal the most vicious anti-trade union laws in the western world, ushered in by Maggie Thatcher, kept intact by 13 years of Labour governments,
and made even worse under Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak.

“Every vote for the Scottish Socialist Party will be a vote for people, not profit. For democratic public ownership of transport to make it free at the point of use for people of all ages. For public ownership of all forms of energy to provide clean, green, affordable energy and the creation of at least 70,000 new jobs in a worker-led, rapid transition to green energy production, tackling the climate crisis and job insecurity. For public ownership of construction to build 100,000 new environmentally advanced council homes for affordable rent, and retrofitting every home free of charge with insulation, draught-proofing, eco-boilers, and fast broadband.

“Over the past two months of street campaigning, we’ve met people desperate for change, for a clean break from poverty amidst plenty, with 1.3 million Scots officially living below the breadline in the fith-richest economy on Earth. Squabbles and recriminations between Labour and the SNP will do nothing to change the lives of ordinary people. The SSP is the only party fighting for a massive redistributrion of wealth from the rich to the rest of us, with a guaranteed £15-an-hour minimum wage; replacing zero-hours contracts with guaranteed minimum hours; full trade union rights from day one at work; democratic public ownership to use the fabulous naurtal and human wealth of Scotland for the people, not the profits of the few.”

SSP campaigners together in Rutherglen, in support of SSP candidate Bill Bonnar.