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G4S chaos in Yorkshire- implications for Nottm.

31-07-2012 22:55

More evidence of the G4S shambles in managing the COMPASS contract which was awarded to them in two regions: Yorkshire and Humberside, and The Midlands and East of England. In Nottingham, G4S have scheduled to undertake the majority of the housing transitions between July and September 2012. We can see from the Emergency bulletin below, that in Yorkshire where transitions started in early July, what this could signal for asylum seekers here too. 

Here's an invitation to a meeting at The Sumac  Centre, 245 Gladstone Street Forest Fields NG7 6HX on Wednseday 8th August 7.00 p.m. This meeting will be an opportunity to discuss wider issues and approaches to G4S and the G4S COMPASS Project in Nottingham and Midlands region.




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An emergency bulletin from SYMAAG notog4s

July  26th 2012


As most of you will know we in the notog4s campaign have tended to assume that the UKBA /G4S undertakings and official statements have meant that evictions and movements of single people and families would, for the majority, mean movements, at worst, within the broad region of Yorkshire and the Humber.


The latest official UKBA Transition bulletin makes it abundantly clear that the claims we made early on in the campaign that in South and West Yorkshire in particular there simply was not a market in ‘decent’ PRS (Public Rented Sector) housing for G4S to exploit was absolutely correct.


One family of two adults and a one year old were moved on Tuesday 24th July 100 miles from Sheffield to Stockton on Tees.The UKBA Transition Bulletin openly threatens more families with such a move.

This case is even more significant because it was from an existing private landlord property,although the new G4S contractor in Sheffield, Target Housing claim to have accommodation available for families – so why have the family been sent 100 miles away from contacts and support?


In Barnsley asylum seeker families have been warned by the outgoing asylum team of moves possibly to Hull and Newcastle. One family interviewed  this week ,of grandparents, parents and school age children,  were given this warning and told they would probably have to move their household possessions in two bags each.


Live Management, the G4S contractor in Barnsley is, we understand, considering acquiring unsuitable properties which they propose to use on a ‘temporay’ basis until they can find contract compliant ones.


The dreaded Angel Lodge in Wakefield, purchased from Angel Housing, has emerged as the new Yorkshire IA centre from September. SYMAAG executive members have horrific memories of actually staying in this dreadful accommodation, opposite Wakefield high security prison.We are campaigning against this decision.


This chaos in UKBA and G4S also indicates that our campaigning (removing UPM and now nobilising against Target) has deepened the crisis for the UKBA and G4S. The ‘soft’ approach of Andrew Gray has now been replaced by the asylum market business approach of Jules Bickers  already deeply unpopular with voluntary sector asylum organisations in the regions he has worked in.




















John Grayson

SYMAAG notog4s




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EF! summer gathering site phone

31-07-2012 19:55

The site phone number is 07758867265

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Breaking……. Urgent: Community In Chiapas, Mexico, Threatened

31-07-2012 19:53

Human rights organisations have warned that the population of nearly 200 Zapatista supporters in the indigenous community of San Marcos Aviles are at very serious risk of violent assault and displacement. The threats made against them have increased sharply since the Mexican elections in July.

Full article | 3 comments

Pussy Riot Support Newcastle

31-07-2012 16:07

Newcastle support for Pussy Riot

Full article | 1 comment

Shell humbled as protestors disrupt arrival of the Tunnel Boring Machine

31-07-2012 13:23

The last twelve plus hours saw protesters in Erris take on one of the largest Gardai operations Ireland has seen in some time – and ran rings around it. The mammoth operation saw hundreds of Gardai and IRMS security trying to escort the tunnel boring machine [TBM] to Aghoos. Yet Shell to Sea campaigners managed, in separate incidents, two lock-ons and used a car to blockade a bridge on the route of the TBM.

Full article | 2 comments

July anti-fascist roundup

31-07-2012 10:55

July saw an anti-immigration march called off in Boston, the EDL rushing to "defend" Derby Pride from the "Islamics", the BNP and English Democrats standing in elections in Corby and Kettering, the conviction of a Leicester EDL member for assault, and a deafening silence from the far right on the subject of white paedophiles in Derby.

We reported how racist Forest fans, who'd previously mocked Leicester fans with chants of "you're just a town full of Pakis", were grumbling into their lager about the takeover of their club by Arabs.

We exposed the reality of the EDL's multicultural poster boy, Glen Warren, an immigrant and Muslim hating member from Leicester.

A report by Notts police revealed that black people are 9 times more likely to be stopped and searched than whites in the county.

An anti-immigration group, the Boston Protest Group, narrowly voted not to hold an anti-immigration march in the Lincolnshire town, although leader, Dean Everitt, says it has been "postponed not cancelled".

The EDL got all hot and bothered about a small group of Muslim homophobes who said they were going to protest at Derbyshire Pride and rushed in to defend the thousands of LGBT marchers, but the rain meant that no one got to play out.

The Church of England voted to ban the clergy from joining racist and discriminatory organisations and the BNP's racist vicar, Robert West, had a mard about it.

We had a good laugh at Nottingham BNP's deranged fascist tweeting.

The BNP came third in the Corby East council by election and won 9.4% of the vote.

Leicester EDL's James Elliot was convicted of drunkenly assaulting a member of UAF, using threatening and abusive language and resisting arrest.

We noticed that the EDL were driven to a demo in Bristol by Leicester coach firm, G.H. Watts, a firm the East Midlands divisions have used on at least 5 previous occasions.

The English Democrats stood a former National Front member in a Kettering borough election and won 14% of the vote, beating the BNP who won 6%.

We exposed the neo-Nazi accounts followed by Northants EDL.

We also noted the silence of the far right on a grooming case in Derby where 7 of the 8 men involved were white.

Keep checking the site for new updates and sending in credible information on fascist activity in the region.

Always antifascist


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A Letter Campaign On Behalf Of Jerome White-Bey – Occupy The Prison Mail Room

31-07-2012 08:26

This is a call out for a new letter writing campaign to protest the treatment of Jerome White-Bey, who yet again is being held in isolation on the punishment blocks under a false investigation. His situation in his own words:

Full article | 17 comments

Finnish Defence League blocked from Tampere Pride parade

30-07-2012 23:07

FDL members waiting
Members of Finnish Defence League (FDL) were blocked non-violently from participating in Tampere Pride march on 21st of July 2012.

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pics and report from counter olympics demo on sat

30-07-2012 22:55

nearly a thousand people representing a smorgasbord of campaign groups marched together under the banner of the counter olympic network (CON) on saturday in east london. the march was followed by speeches in wennington green.

click on image for larger version. 'some rights reserved' - free for credited non-commercial use, otherwise contact author for permission


from midday on saturday, as people assembled on the slopes of mile end park, they were joined by an intrusion of police liaison officers in their baby-blue tabards, disarmingly chatting and joking with the more gullible members of the crowd, while carrying out their usual agenda of surveillance and intelligence gathering. meanwhile, a samba band tuned up, people made homemade banners, and friendly connections were made between the myriad campaign groups representing that day.


shortly after 1pm, the march set off from grove road, heading east along bow road. at the front were several members of DPAC (disabled people against cuts) in wheelchairs, their beef being with ATOS, the private firm contracted by government to "assess" disability allowance eligibility, and sponsor of the para-olympics. ATOS has ruled people with terminal cancer as eligible to work, and even suggested one person in a coma should not receive benefit. they receive massive amounts of public money to bother and terrify the most vulnerable in our society.


the negative effects of the olympics reach out in so many ways and touch so many people - it was extraordinary to see so many groups with a common focus - among them, unions, anti-cuts groups, anarchists, local campaign groups from displaced communities, those invaded by olympic facilities or missile bases, civil rights and right to protest groups, police monitoring groups, anti-corporate campaigners against G4S, Dow chemicals, and BP, and of course the socialists with their newspapers.


as the march stretched out along the bow road, it was clear there were several hundred going on to a thousand people there, and there were also (given the UK media virtual black-out on anti-olympic protests) a surprising number of journos, although most were from overseas press.


as the march approached bow roundabout, it peeled off to the left along fairfield road and past the bow quarter buildings, where a controversial missile base has been stationed on top of the water tower above residential buidlings. there was quite a long wait there while the back of the march caught up. soldiers on the top of the tower watched, one with binoculars, as the protest chanted down below, "seb coe, hey ho, get your missiles out of bow". 


eventually the protest continued through some back streets to emerge on roman road heading back west.


there was an incident near the rear of the march as someone tampered with the white cordon tapes that hemmed people in, and he was detained by police and searched. many on the march waited or ran back to show solidarity and support and demand his release. after a few minutes, police, who claimed they'd seen him with a knife but couldn't produce one in the search, released him, and the crowd fed into wennington green at around 3pm.


there, a small makeshift stage was set up, and people listened to a string of speakers, while the 'woodcraft folk' provided some entertainment for kids.


first speaker was brian richardson who spoke among other things about racism in sport, then ruth tanner from 'war on want' told us about olympic sponsor adidas's 34 pence per hour wages to indonesian workers providing the olympic kit.


next up was naomi who was one of the cyclists arrested last night on the peaceful critical mass bike ride. she told a harrowing story of her arrest and subsequent treatment by police, then quoted olympic black power activist john carlos and got the crowd chanting "i am not afraid of offending my oppressor".


chris nineham spoke on behalf of the 'olympics missile campaign', and pointed out the records already broken by team GB. the record number of arrests at an olympic opening, the highest ever ticket prices, and the record militarisation of the games. 


next up was john mcdonnell who said he was there to show solidarity with the victims of dow and atos. he said it was time to reclaim the olympics, kick out the corporations and make it about sport again. he also said it was time to campaign to change the system. quite why he's a labour MP i've never understood - he certainly doesn't speak for the labour party, and instead says many sensible things.


gail chester spoke on behalf of the counter olympics network and then she introduced julian cheyne who told us about the counter-olympics torch relays (, and officially handed over the vancouver torch to representatives from who told us about the plight of the circasian people exiled from their lands by genocide and erased from history by the russians. two circasians showed us a traditional dance and we heard some of their language. they will parade the torch at the sochi winter olympics before passing it on again to activists in rio for 2016.


we then heard from rio activist teresa williamson, who is concerned among other things that the 2016 olympics will see further displacement of the poor there in the guise of regeneration. she informed us that while the favelas are portrayed as the worst slums, in fact many of the more established favelas are a cheap place to live, with reasonable sanitation, internet access, and community solidarity - they are afraid the olympics will wipe them away and destroy their communities.


police were apparently getting itchy about an overrun of the agreed protest time, and organisers felt it necessary to cut short many more of the planned speakers, finishing with a performance from the 'reclaim shakespeare company'. 

Full article

Combat Workfare Tour of Shame - Liverpool City Centre - Sat, 8th September 2012

30-07-2012 22:30


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Nottm Art Show attacks corporate Olympics

30-07-2012 14:55

An online art exhibition by Lord Biro leader of the Bus Pass Elvis Party. Some of the artwork and poetry from this exhibition will on show in the windows of No 2 West End Arcade until 16 August.




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Open Our Towpath road bike ride

30-07-2012 14:55

The Lea towpath from Homerton to Bow has been closed from July 3rd until September 10th as a so-called “security” measure for the Olympics. LOCOC have put some diversion signs to guide cyclists along an alternative route.

About twenty people set off on Sunday to follow this route, highlightning how dangerous it is. The police diverted this ride to a safer route, but every day cyclists do not have this privilege.

About twenty people set off at 1.30 from the blocked tow path, under the A12, and on to the route signposted by LOGOC, accompanied by six police on bikes and a van. Experienced cyclists were not surprised at the missed posts. The ride could roughly follow the route thanks to the map of the new route that one of them had managed to get hold of, stopping at every turn.

At the end of Addington Road and turning left on to Bow Road, the suggested route by LOGOC is so dangerous for cyclists, the riders decided to follow an alternative route themselves and the police took on stopping the traffic and redirecting the group to ensure their safety.

The police decided to leave the group on Abbey Lane Cycle parking facilities. The ride went back to the starting point, this time trying to follow the suggested route as a lone rider would do without police presence, and ended up at the A12 end of the tow path closure for a group photo, though with a much smaller group than when it had started.

Full article | 47 comments

The EDL's Latest Fear: Communistic Ray Guns

30-07-2012 13:57

You've all heard of Muslamic Ray Guns, the inter-Stella weapons that gave EDL thickoes the willies, making them spontaneously piss themselves in public, giving rise to the incredibly-fashionable "Damp Denim Look". Since then, the paranoid losers are calling everybody who opposes them, from anarchists to liberal democrats and even Tories, "communists!".

Meet the brand new anti-fascist weapon that is far more effective at stopping EDLers sleep at night than a family-size nosebag of cocaine.....

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Calais Olympics: the other side of the medals

30-07-2012 12:23

From Khartoum to Calais
In the lead up and during the Olympics migrants and refugees continue to be chased on the streets and at the border of Calais ...

See: Olympic Cleansing in Calais

Counter-olympic demo: games without borders

More Olympic Evictions in Calais

Full article | 5 comments

Counter-olympic demo: games without borders

30-07-2012 11:29

unofficial procession
Migrants in Calais have been under increased attack as border security has been stepped up and the town has been "cleansed" for the arrival of tourists and athlete training camps. In the games without borders demo on Saturday 28 July migrants and supporters defied the clampdown to enjoy some unofficial games of our own.

Full article | 12 comments

Griffin gets a Scottish slap.

30-07-2012 11:00

BNP run out of Scotland on Saturday.

Full article | 2 comments

New Leeds ABC Leaflet

30-07-2012 09:57

Prisoners need support. New general-use Leeds ABC leaflet and small poster for notice-boards, etc.

Full article | 1 comment

GodLikeProductions Government Internet Extortion?

30-07-2012 02:32

GodLikeProductions Government Spying
GodLikeProductions website, an incredibly controversial internet platform frequently visited by government intelligence agents worldwide may actually be a clandestine government collection point run amuck.

Full article | 8 comments

olympic critical mass - report and pics

29-07-2012 22:55

for more than a year, the critical mass bicycle ride has had minimal or no policing. that all changed on friday, with a massive police operation in place and draconian conditions imposed to try and prevent riders from entering any part of north london. despite the deployment of police from several forces alongside the met, and even a fly-by from a lynx armed forces helicopter, hundreds of cyclists defied the ban, out-witted the police, and cycled as far as the olympic village, causing far less disruption than that caused by police trying to enforce their potentially unlawful ban.

click on image for larger version. 'some rights reserved' - free for credited non-commercial use, otherwise contact author for permission


as the mass assembled from around 6pm on the south bank under waterloo bridge, there was already a FIT team, several 'police liaison officers' including chief inspector sonia davis from hackney's counter-terrorist operations office, a dozen or more cycle cops, and a couple of dozen uniformed police including a contingent from south yorkshire police.

numbers at first seemed lower than normal, but by 7 had built up to several hundred. 

as an armed forces lynx helicopter hovered overhead, the police drove a large range rover vehicle into the crowd to make indecipherable announcements over a poor loudspeaker system, while officers mingled with the cyclists handing out their section 12 warning letters.

soon after 7, with some chants of "whose streets, our streets", the cyclists set off, and began their customary loop around the imax cinema and onto waterloo bridge. there, police ran across the road, blocking the procession, and a large police van parked across the carriageway.

arguments ensued, including the fact that police were overstepping their own conditions by not allowing bikes onto the bridge, considering that it was actually south of the river!

after several minutes, with the bridge closure creating far more "disruption to the life of the community" than the critical mass would normally cause, much of the mass moved on east. however, some remained, continuing their pressure on police, and eventually the bridge was reopened to traffic, and a few cyclists did get across.

there were more serious confrontations at blackfriars bridge, including an altercation with a transport officer (4125) who so lost control that a police medic had to restrain him at one point! ( AND

several hundred cyclists waited at london bridge, while police deployed vans and TSG officers at the south side of the bridge. there, there were more serious confrontations, and some TSG officers appeared intent on violence. suddenly, police were trying to clear a path for a large black 4x4 with tinted reflective windows designed to prevent photography. peering in, people realised the driver (with a minder) was none other than david beckham, on his way to the olympic opening ceremony. 

police became quite violent towards cyclists in the path of the vehicle, but with so many cycles in such little road space it was actually hard to move even for those who felt they wanted to comply. after several minutes of inching forward, some of the front cyclists moved away and the car slowly set off down tooley street. as police ran to catch up, the front bikes stopped again, slowing beckham's progress, but seeing an opportunity, in a rather dangerous move he accelerated, skidding off to the right, narrowly missing a pedestrian and a cyclist, then sped through a red light and drove on east.

by now, the mass had split somewhat, with some having set off back west, and another group heading to try tower bridge. there, police once again blocked the route with vehicles and bodies, causing massive traffic disruption once more, and further disruption to the life of the community. however, as numbers in the cycle group had diminished here, some were allowed across the bridge in ones and twos on foot.

by now, with small numbers making it over at various points, a sizeable group began riding north of the river in defiance of the police orders, by the time it was heading east along bethnal green road (without causing anything more than the usual fleeting traffic jam), it numbered at least a couple of hundred. 

despite the thousands of troops and combined uk police forces along with helicopters and undercover surveillance deployed in london, this group of cyclists continued east, apparently followed by one sole police van containing three officers, which was having difficulty overtaking the mass.

more police started appearing along roman road, and the mass turned south by mile end park, and then east again towards the bow fly-over and to within a stone's throw of the olympic stadium. just before the fly-over, the police attempted a cordon forcing the cyclists north past bow quarter, but concerned they were heading into a possible police kettle they decided to ride around and through the cordon and continue east. numbers were dwindling, but still around one hundred.

it was close to 9pm and the authorities were finally mobilising and closing in. i counted 30 police vans, with many TSG, sirens blazing, bringing up the rear of the cyclists, and a group of sixty or seventy were finally cordoned at the junction with warton road, a further couple of dozen making it on towards stratford station, where they too were held.

outside the cordons, other arrests took place. one young muslim man was rear-handcuffed, and despite telling police he'd been fasting all day, was made to sit in the road for nearly half an hour without any water. he kept explaining his predicament, and was also physically sick in the road. clearly in great discomfort, he was still refused help, and when someone tried to give him some liquid an officer violently intervened, spilling the juice on the ground. another girl tried to take details and enquire after his condition and police then arrested her, also using rear cuffs.

within the kettle, no food, drink or toilet arrangements were provided, and people sat or stood around on the concrete for around 90 minutes before a slow process began of handcuffing or cable-tieing each person, photographing them, and escorting them on to one of three single decker buses that had arrived. as the first bus filled with police and arrestees, the second was used for bicycles, pretty much thrown in on top of each other, and the third bus for the rest of the detainees.

meanwhile, the group held at stratford had been loaded into some vans, with others escorted in handcuffs on foot, and they passed by the kettle west towards the fly-over. they'd been told they were being taken to charing cross police station, but presumably some more transport was on its way, although i'm not sure how long they were walked for.

it has emerged that in all, 182 people were arrested that night, the majority under suspicion of having knowingly breached the section 12 conditions imposed on critical mass, but some for other public order offences and alleged assaults elsewhere along the route. some were taken to charing cross, but many found themselves in edmonton or in croydon. there were no toilet facilities provided on the buses and the arrestees were aboard these in handcuffs for hours, then made to sit on concrete for a further three hours, before finally being given something to drink.

none were allowed to leave with their bicycles, instead being told the bikes were in charlton and that they'd have to phone to arrange retrieval. the first bikes have been returned today.

it seems that all were given bail conditions which ban them from cycling in newham, or going near any olympic venues or routes, and of attempting to interfere with the passage of olympic paricipants. 


legal background

last year, in may, the metropolitan police lost an appeal in the high court which finally established that the mass is a 'commonly or customarily held procession' as described in the public order act, and so, exempt from prior notification as required by section 11 of that act. however, this does not exempt it from possible use of section 12 or (theoretically) 13. 

section 13 allows the possibility of  a ban (signed by the secretary of state) where police can show a real risk of serious disorder - highly improbable for CM.

however, section 12, allowing the imposition of conditions, has a lower threshold, including the slightly open "risk of serious disruption to the life of the community", and this is what was used on friday. 

in order to comply with human rights legislation, it is important that any conditions applied are proportionate and necessary.

since the police have shown themselves keen to control the critical mass previously, the fact that they haven't used section 12 before would suggest they were not over-optimistic about its likelihood of being upheld in the courts. 

however, with the "special circumstances" of the olympics, they might have a stronger case for this particular ride. but conditions banning the ride from the whole of north london and beyond would seem to be quite an excessive interpretation of "proportionate or necessary" and might form the basis of a legal challenge for the cyclists detained on friday if they face court or later decide to challenge the police via compensation claims or judicial reviews later on.

also, given that the ride always takes place on the last friday of the month means that the police had five years to plan for this, and yet the letter handed out to cyclists gave no detail on how the police had arrived at the belief there would be serious disruption.

when the law was drafted, there were concerns and warnings that the new extension of power should be used carefully and that the police should weigh up whether by imposing conditions based on avoiding serious disruption, they might be causing a more serious problem of serious disorder in response to their actions. this may well have been the case on friday, both because the police caused far more disruption to the community themselves by closing off london bridges to all traffic for significant periods of time, and also because their actions significantly increased the incidents of scuffles and other disorder throughout the evening (unlikely to have occured had the mass gone ahead as normal). 

the kettling of cyclists without food or water, their prolonged detention in handcuffs aboard the buses without toilet facilities, and further detention on concrete floors with little or no food or water, were all serious contraventions of the authorities' duty of care.

section 12 of the public order act used to be a 'non-arrestable' offence, only requiring a verified name and address for delivery of a fine. in 2005, the SOCPA act made most offences arrestable under certain prescribed conditions, and the one given to suspects on friday/saturday was "in order to allow the prompt and efficient investigation of the offence or of the conduct of the person in question". however, no-one has reported being interviewed, so it is very hard to see what "investigation" the police carried out before releasing people, and this alone may be grounds for challenge and compensation.

as of sunday night, only three people have actually been charged with offences.

Full article

David Joe Neilson Independent Candidate for Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner

29-07-2012 15:53

I am standing on a anti corruption platform. The chances of an honest Police & Crime Commissioner being elected are getting slimmer. Why have the Activists in Sussex not put someone forward