Just Transitions - A low carbon future that benefits workers?

Just Transitions - A low carbon future that benefits workers?

Last month RISE Lothian circle hosted a hugely successful screening of the film "Just Transitions" so good the makers Reel News have allowed us to share the full film here and are offering an extra HD version for anyone looking to host a local screening.

The film centre's around the idea of a Just Transition from traditional industrial high carbon workplaces to a low carbon economy whilst ensuring workers and the local community continue to thrive.


" The COP 23 climate talks in Bonn last month were dominated by the concept of just transition, both inside the conference and outside in the actions and meetings of climate activists. But what does just transition mean? How can we move to a low carbon economy in a way that isn't to the detriment of workers who work in the fossil fuel industry and the communities that have been ruined under capitalism? Trade unionists and environmentalists from all over the world outline a number of visionary projects and ideas. Featuring Trade Unions for Energy Democracy, Scot E3, the battle against coal in the Phillippines, just transition in North Dakota and Jackson, just recovery in Puerto Rico and Texas, and the astonishing Ende Gelände action which shut down the lignite coalfield in the Rheinland. "




Arrest of Puigdemont and death of Anna Campbell highlights hypocrisy at the heart of UK politics.

Arrest of Puigdemont and death of Anna Campbell highlights hypocrisy at the heart of UK politics.

The reaction to the arrest of exiled Catalan president Carlos Puigdemont and the death of International volunteer Anna Campbell in Northern Syria prove the rank hypocrisy at the heart of UK politics.




While the Conservatives desperately grasped at the Salisbury poisoning, moving quickly to blame Russian agents, then hastily deporting nearly two dozen diplomats and their families in an effort to look powerful and decisive. The move came after being utterly ridiculed in recent months during Brexit negotiations. Their actions are in stark contrast to their silence over the ongoing oppression of Catalan political leaders and in their facilitation of the deal to sell Turkey the fighter jets that murdered international volunteer Anna Campbell.




We hope the SNP will not meekly follow a conservative line on these issues as they have done after the fall out of the Salisbury poisoning. All efforts must be made by the devolved Government and SNP MP’s to ensure the protection of those who are politically targeted by Rajoy’s oppressive Spanish state and to an end of sale of military equipment that murder the brave volunteers in the Syrian Democratic Forces, who are defending the hard won vision of an equal and secular society.



Pro Independence socialists in Scotland must now call on the Government to refuse to facilitate any attempts to extradite any Catalan political figures such as Clara Ponsati currently the director of the school of economics and finance at St Andrews University, Further demands must be made to force an immediate end to the sale of fighter jets and arms to Turkey, a NATO “ally” currently engaged in the murder and destabilisation of the Afrin Canton in the Autonomous region of Northern Syria (Rojava).



The actions of both the Spanish and Turkish governments must be utterly condemned.



International solidarity and support to the people of Catalonia and Rojava.



Just Transitions - The fight for climate jobs.

Just Transitions - The fight for climate jobs.

RISE Lothians are hosting a screening of the film 'Just Transitions'. The film centre's around the fight of workers from across the world fighting for the right to transition into new work places as the global economy changes in line with environmental justice.

Circle co-ordinator Pat Smith forwarded this open invite.

"Around the world, there is a growing movement demanding a 'just transition' for the workforce, so that workers are not left in the cold as fossil fuels become consigned to the past."

"From the Navajo Nation in Arizona to Ghana and to Port Augusta in South Australia and in Scotland workers are looking for solutions for a 'Just Transition'."

"This is an inspiring and uplifting film. Please come along and join the discussion. Everyone is welcome"

The film will be screened  on Tuesday 13th of March at 7.00pm in the Augustine Church, George 1V Bridge, EH1 1EL.

Defending our public infrastructure, by any means necessary.

Defending our public infrastructure, by any means necessary.

RISE organiser Sean Baillie shares why he thinks we must defend our public infrastructure, by any means necessary ahead of a series of Anti-Cuts demos organised around Scotland.

"As we enter into the next round of council budgets proposals and discussions on ‘efficiencies’ we must look at what our public services are in reality, look at new ways to defend not only our services and public infrastructure, but how we can build our local economies, develop our neighbourhoods and strengthen our power as communities."

"Our infrastructure is attacked, closed and sold off under the guise of Austerity, yet there is no attacks or impact on the lives of those who caused the economic meltdown, their share of the wealth and power has increased dramatically since the downturn. Instead, it is used as an excuse to roll back years of economic defensive measures built up by the working classes, to destroy the institutions we have built to protect ourselves economically and politically."

"Their quest for infinite profit and wealth has seen them de-industrialise much of the UK stripping away the economic power of working class people, they have then set out to dismantle our public institutions in order to suck more of our money into the pockets of a few, running down services until they no longer work and then putting them out to market. They do this because they have run out of idea’s, they’ve run out of people to exploit in far-flung corners of the globe, they’ve burdened us all with as much personal debt as possible in order to keep the economy growing and they have nowhere else to turn. They either have to hand over their stocks and shares and work for a living, or they further destroy our way of life."

"That is the fight we face today, we either force the redistribution of wealth and power to build a sustainable economy, preventing the trickle up economics of money being sucked out of our neighbourhoods and into offshore hedge funds, or we sit back and watch them destroy our society."

  "Defiance, resistance and movement to protect our public infrastructure keep money in our economy, winning these fights will keep the money in our communities and will enable us to economically and politically defend ourselves. Only by securing these foundations can we not only begin to build a vision of a better future but actually start working towards those goals."

"RISE has proven that we are willing to take direct and necessary action to defend our communities and public spaces, we will continue to do so by encouraging and supporting local groups, communities and neighbourhoods to take ownership of this fight. If the politicians and big political parties continue to manage the slow decline of our institutions and infrastructure, our communities will have no option but to take ownership and matters into our own hands in order to protect ourselves."


GMB and Unison are holding a join demonstration outside Glasgow City Chambers on Thursday the 22nd of February at 12.30.

Unison in North Lanarkshire have called a demo outside the council offices in Motherwell for Friday 23rd of February at 10.30am.

RISE Lothians to host second Brexit Red Line Debate on Trade.

RISE Lothians to host second Brexit Red Line Debate on Trade.

RISE Lothians second Brexit Red Line Debate, This months topic will be on the issue of trade.

Kicking off the discussion are 3 fantastic speakers:

Liz Murray from Global Justice Now. Liz will talk about post Brexit deals, their impact and a little on the Global south.

Kate Nevens from Campaign against the arms trade and the programme director in Scotland for Amnesty International.

James Foley giving a socialist perspective on any post Brexit trade deals on behalf of  RISE.

The debate will held on Tuesday 13th of February at 7pm, in the Augustine Church, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh.

This meeting is be open to all and more information can be found on our Facebook page here.

Carillion liquidators hold back wages owed to 900 agency workers.

Carillion liquidators hold back wages owed to 900 agency workers.

Over 900 workers employed through sham agencies have been left without pay. 

Liquidators brought in to manage and transfer Carillion assets, have reportedly not authorised wages due out to over 900 workers employed through the Carillion owned employment agency Carillion Rail Resources.

In a myriad of confusing umbrella companies and secondary agencies, where workers actually have to pay a processing fee to get their wages. This is a further slap in the face to a workforce who have helped upgrade the Shotts to Glasgow rail link and are currently working on a platform extension in Edinburgh Waverley Station. 

Using a system that has plagued the construction industry for years. Carillion has set up an employed agency, allowing them to hire and fire people at an arm's length whilst allowing wiggle room around many hard-fought statutory workers rights. This agency then forces many of its workers to use payday umbrella companies, that deduct a processing fee for calculating tax and National Insurance before releasing their wages. This is a system designed to cut operating costs and admin staff within construction companies, but is often dressed up as a way of affording workers increased flexibility.

Workers employed by these agencies are not currently guaranteed an offer of employment by any company who picks up the projects after Carillion’s liquidation. Level 2 and 3 apprentices who were due to move up a grade have had their contract terminated on the 31t of January. Even those employed ‘books in’ or PAYE have no assurances that current terms and conditions will be met, because the Transfer of Application (TUPE) will not apply due to a winding-up order being issued against the company.

Carillion a global company known to have been guilty of blacklisting workers who were members of trade unions, have a long history of opposition to and organised workers. The greed and gamble of the corporate manager on the stock market has been their ultimate downfall, however, it is unfortunately, the workers who create the wealth who are the hardest hit by corporate greed.

We send our support to the workers affected by this corporate criminality and demand that every penny earned, must be paid out.

Any worker who wishes to remain on any of the current projects must be given a retaining wage and an offer of employment equal to or greater than the one they were on.

As many of the projects handed to Carillion are Scottish Government infrastructure projects it is the responsibility of the Scottish Government to ensure the rights and employment of all workers are protected.

RISE are hosting a discussion on the potential economic impact the Carillion collapse will have and will look at how we can prevent further public money being wasted by global private enterprise.

 Pollokshaws Burgh Halls
 Glasgow, 31st of January, 7 - 9 pm.
 Speakers include Sarah Collins Policy officer at the STUC and Ben Wray Head of Policy at the think tank Commonweal.

More information can be found here.

RISE appeal to the SNP over the OBFA.

RISE appeal to the SNP over the OBFA.

RISE Welcomes the result of the stage 1 vote taken in the Scottish Parliament, to repeal the Offensive Behaviour at Football Act.



We have supported the repeal of the OBFA since our very first policy conference where many of our members spoke first hand of the treatment they had received from police officers targeting them under this act.



Our opposition to this act is simply that we believe it does absolutely nothing to combat sectarianism, as is widely suggested. It has instead been disproportionately used to politically police young working class football fans, who have been in no previous conflict with the law. Existing laws are already in place to tackle hate crimes and religious bigotry throughout our society. We oppose the act which grants license to target a specific section of the working class for political gains.



We remain committed to actively engaging with people across Scotland in stamping out religious divisions, divisions which have been engineered to keep working class people at each other’s throats. Unity can only come from education, engagement, shared experience and common struggle.



The irony of this bill whilst trying to impose a morality from above, using strong arm tactics and a politicised police force has only proved to bring fans from across Scotland together to defend themselves. An act that has failed to target sectarian hatred at a handful of clubs has united a generation of young football fans across the country, a generation who have fell foul of a tactically inept police force who had hoped to protect funding, and done nothing to prevent sectarian chanting. In a misdiagnosed attempt to separate football and politics, coordinated actions from fans across the country has proven to politicise many young fans.



We have no doubt that for many the support for this act is well intentioned, unfortunately the resulting tactics, strategy and roll out of the act has proven chaotic, ineffectual and counter-productive. The causes of religious and hatred run deeper in our society than football, they are entwined within our social and economic structures, they are the result of decades of misinformation and division peddled by a system designed to break the cohesion within our communities and divert our attention away from those who cause us the most harm.



The causes of Sectarianism are forced upon us, a solution won’t be found the same way.



We commend Fans Against Criminalisation (FAC)  who have campaigned for many year to get the repeal to this stage and we commend the work done by Labour MSP’s in parliament.



We appeal to the SNP, we welcome attempts to combat sectarianism but feel this act has been ill thought out, misused and has shown to have dangerous consequences. There is no shame in repealing the bill in order to rethink and propose new initiatives to rid Scottish society of religious bigotry. A Government willing to do so would show leadership in the face of adversity.



The repeal bill is currently in Stage 2  which allows amendments to be considered, this is expected to be completed within the next month before being voted on again by the Scottish Parliament.



RISE are planning a serious of Public meetings on the OBFA to further the debate and understanding of the act and the impact it has had on football fans and their families.

We remain committed to the cause of Scottish Independence, these debates are crucial as we continue to look at how we build a fairer society.

For more information keep an eye on our social media pages or join us via our website.


Carillion Collapse: How do we build a better economy?

Carillion Collapse: How do we build a better economy?

Rise Glasgow South are hosting their first Red Line Debate on the 31st of January. Following the successes of previous Red Line Debates hosted by the Lothians circle, Glasgow South will be looking to explore and debate the recent Collapse of international construction firm Carillion. 

The news of the Carillion's collapse has been covered in length by all national news outlets after it was revealed that major public sector contracts were handed to the firm despite repeated warnings about the companies financial stability.

The endless list of schemes that transfer millions of public money into the hands of blacklisting private firms must end immediately. A renewed focus on how we can build a planned economy that invests in our people and secures the future of the institutions that we rely on, must begin.  

The STUC have since called for an immediate moratorium on all public sector outsourcing whilst a review is carried out.

Pro Independence think tank Commonweal have also released a policy paper stating that "In Scotland at least, not only should it (Carillions Collapse) be the beginning of the end for the private finance model in public infrastructure, but that we already have the beginnings of a new model which could replace it." Which goes on to explain what that model could look like.

Amongst those scheduled to speak at the debate are Sarah Collins, Policy officer at the STUC and Ben Wray, head of policy at Commonweal (pc), the debate will be held on the 31st of January in the Pollokshaws Burgh Halls at 7pm.

More information can be found here.

Read the Smith Commissions report on moving on from outsourcing and PFI schemes here.





The year ahead with RISE

The year ahead with RISE

 A RISE National Organiser shares their  thoughts and ideas for the year ahead in 5 short points. 


1 - Organise our neighbourhoods to defend ourselves economically and politically.



Over the course of 2018 we must strive to organise our neighbourhoods, build community networks and relationships with local groups to defend ourselves against the harshest aspects of the current political and economic system.



Whether defending a local library, preventing the sale of public land or overturning those who have been sanctioned. We must build the power of our neighbourhoods to not only defend these hard earned working class institutions, but to enable our communities to go on the attack winning must needed reforms and new publicly owned infrastructure.



We must rally round and resist the closure of every publicly owned facility, service or instituion. These lifelines are the hard earned reparations, won by millions of working class people who toiled for generations building the wealth of todays elite. Physical resistance cannot be ruled out but must be backed up and supported by extensive and engaged neighbourhood organisation.




2 - Win the Campaign for 150,000 publicly owned new homes.




With approximately 150,000 people on waiting lists for social housing and 40% of all households suffering from fuel poverty. Scotland faces a housing crisis. At the same time rents are steadily increasing, frequently ahead of inflation and ahead of average wage rises for tenants. This squeeze is increasing poverty, ill health and giving abusive landlords free reign to act outside the law.

All of this is adding to the extreme pressure put on our housing services already unable to cope, with more and more people being made homeless and even dying on the street (1 every week in Glasgow alone). We feel that in such extreme times, extreme measures must be taken.

We have done it before from 1945 to 1951 the UK government built 1.2 million publicly owned houses. This laid the groundwork for decades of improvement in people’s lives. We believe a similar house building programme can do the same again, lifting hundreds of thousands out of poverty and into prosperity.

An extensive house building scheme such as this would serve to stimulate our domestic economy, provide jobs and apprenticeships for thousands of young workers. Scotland has invested heavily on infrastructure projects to help business grow, now it’s time to invest in housing to help people grow.



3 - Expose and fight Land Banking through occupations and community ownership.


With local authorities forced to put public land up for sale as part of any development package, we believe that we must firstly fight to ensure public land stays in public hands. Across the country millions of pounds worth of privately owned land is deliberately left vacant to avoid paying tax whilst the value skyrockets. These derelict spaces have an immediate adverse effect on our communities and neighbourhoods.

In the growing fight to ensure that the continued aftermath of de-industrialisation is mitigated and in the fight to ensure growing automation has an emancipatory affect rather than an oppressive one, we must control and own our infrastructure. Vacant land, buildings and private property must be used to benefit neighbouring communities or handed over to those communities to do it themselves.

In 2018 we will be continuing our campaign by serving the worst offenders with a notice period, occupying strategic buildings and a wider use of the community empowerment act to highlight these issues, and to ensure power and control of our communities is rooted in our communities.


4 - Help to organise our workplaces through trade unions, to ensure increased job security, a shorter working week and an increase in wages.

This year we will continue to support and build trade union membership across the country. Our members are represented in nearly every major union, from workplace reps to seats on national bodies. Our members commit themselves fully to building trade union density and engagement within their workplaces and beyond.

We believe that organised, engaged, collective action through our unions can help build real economic power within our workplaces. This economic power will give everyone the best possible chance of achieving greater job security, a shorter working week and an increase in wages.

These 3 demands are the basic needs for any worker to improve their conditions and have the economic freedom to enjoy life that little bit more.



5 - Education and Agitation for an alternative to Capitalism and for an Independent Scotland.


Through wider platforms such as Conter and the Popular Education Network we will continue to share ideas and debate the most innovative and exciting theories with others from across the left.

We all have a duty to not only educate ourselves but also learn and share ideas, reimagine history and build a vision of what our society can and should look like. The Independence movement helped to engage and educate hundreds of thousands of people around the belief that Another Scotland is Possible. It is essential that we continue to learn and engage to build that very Scotland.

We are still in the the centenary of the ‘revolutionary decade’, from the Dublin lockout of 1913, the massive Glasgow rent strikes of 1915, to the Russian Revolutions of the early 19th century and our own ‘Red Clydeside’ era throughout this period including the infamous Battle of George square in 1919.

These are all examples of hidden working class history, What we learn from these struggles can provide harsh lessons for today, but also empower a confidence that these ideas are not alien concepts or abstract ideas that cannot and never have been won.



RISE Activists Stage Occupation In Demand For Public Housing

RISE Activists Stage Occupation In Demand For Public Housing

24 hour political occupation to highlight the urgent need for more publicly owned housing and the detrimental effect widespread land banking has on working class communities.

Today on Human Rights day we have occupied 190 Trongate. This building has a long history. It was built on the site of Shawfield Mansion which was erected in 1711 and was the scene of an infamous riot in 1725 over a new tax on Scottish Malt. Glaswegians blamed Campbell who was an MP for the passing of the act and sacked the mansion.

More recently the listed building has been renovated to include residential dwelling from the first floor up and a retail unit on the ground floor that to our knowledge has never been let out. Recent firms tasked with managing this lease include Cushman and Wakefield, global property vultures.

Cushman & Wakefield is among the largest commercial real estate services firms with revenues of $6 billion.The firm operates in more than 70 countries and 45,000 employees.

Over the past few months RISE members have been highlighting empty buildings around Scotland. This has been part of a wider campaign to highlight the negative impact that land banking and property gate-keeping has on local working class communities.

We stated that unless these properties were used in a manner that would directly benefit our communities we would take actions to ensure that they were.

As Christmas is approaching, families are forced to stretch household budgets further and deeper into debt, whilst land and property is hoarded and locked off to protect the wealth of a tiny minority. Our continued campaigning will focus on a variety of issues and topics that will highlight the deeply adverse economic and social effects property gate-keeping has on our working class communities.

We feel that present circumstances force us to focus on the pressing housing crisis and struggles people are facing whilst homeless. We commend the great work done by homeless charities and outreach groups, who a providing invaluable help and support to people in our communities. We believe it is imperative to support the work being done by people on the frontline by demanding that society tackles the root causes of homelessness and insecure housing. It is time to take direct political action to further highlight these issues.

Latest Scottish Government figures for September 2016 show that there were 35,727 residential properties that had been empty for more than six months, compared with the 34,100 homeless applications made between 1st April 2016 to 31th March 2017.    These figures show that the majority of people facing homeslessness could be housed over the winter months. As these buildings lie empty, working class people forced out onto the streets of our biggest cities are dying. We believe this is unnacceptable.

We believe that only the mass building of publicly owned housing will stand a chance of eradicating homelessness permanently. You can support this by signing our petition to build 100,000 publicly owned houses here

We invite politicians from all parties, Glasgow city council and those who work on the front line of homeless services to come down and provide support to anyone who may seek shelter during the occupation. If the need arises we will accompany anyone seeking emergency accommodation to the appropriate services by marching from the occupation to appropriate services.

If this action does not provide the appropriate political stimulus to ensure that everyone is housed during the winter months we are fully prepared to repeat these tactics and others until we feel appropriate action has been taken.









RISE statement supporting the Independent Republic of Catalonia

RISE statement supporting the Independent Republic of Catalonia

 RISE statement supporting the independent republic of Catalonia.

“RISE is unequivocal in its support for the independent republic of Catalonia, after the historic vote on Friday 27 October in the Catalan Parliament.

“RISE believes the international community must now recognise Catalonia as a sovereign and independent state. In particular, we call on the Scottish Government, the UK Government and the European Union to recognise Catalonia’s new independent state status based on the right of nations to self-determination.

“This vote was the only possible democratic response of the Catalan Parliament to the violent repression of the Spanish state of the 1 October referendum and its attempt to impose direct rule through article 155.

“All attempts by the Spanish state to destroy the independent republic of Catalonia must be resisted internationally. RISE will be participating in protests and other forms of solidarity to show that supporters of democracy across Europe and the world stand with, and will defend, the Catalan republic.”


  1. For more information contact Sean at sean.baillie.rise@gmail.com
  2. RISE is supporting the Catalan Defence Committee Scotland as part of an international movement to defend the Catalan Republic, for more including a list of supporters visit https://catalandefence.org/
  3. RISE members Deborah Waters and Jonathon Shafi are currently in Catalonia with our comrades from CUP, the radical left party in Catalonia, showing direct solidarity with the Catalan republic. For more information or to arrange interviews please get in touch.

RISE places Landbankers on notice.

RISE places Landbankers on notice.

RISE Scotland members placed hundreds of posters on vacant commercial properties around the country on Tuesday night. Aiming to draw attention to the thousands of empty buildings that blight our towns and cities, and to encourage our neighbourhoods to look at how we can use vacant properties for the benefit of our local community.

Posters with the following text were placed on old bank buildings, empty BHS stores and council properties that are tendered out at inflated costs.


Failure to use this building for the benefit of the local community, will result in the occupation and expropriation of the property, by the local community for the local community.

Whilst this property lies empty and derelict thousands of our people are forced into poverty, hunger, homelessness and in extreme cases death.

We have grounds to believe the land banking of this property is a direct contributing factor to these problems.

It is for the above stated reasons that we request that this empty property is put to a use that directly benefits society or actions will be taken to ensure it does.

Signed: RISE Scotland"

Last year we were involved in various campaigns in the aftermath of a number of homeless deaths in Glasgow, at that time the high number of empty properties was a major talking point. Even after a Sunday Herald front page story revealing that one homeless person was dying on the street a week in the city, thousands of the same buildings are still vacant.

We believe that this can help not only provide political pressure and support for our homeless communities throughout the hard winter months, but can be the ripple that starts a wave of actions across Scotland.  We are asking our local Circles, Networks and Affiliated organisations to get out into their neighbourhoods and start planning how these commercial spaces could be used to directly benefit our society. 

From community cafe's to rave's and gigs these spaces could be used for a diverse range of events designed to bring our people together, empowering them to transform our high streets and city centres into places that everyone can enjoy and benefit from.

We now encourage everyone to download our letter, grab a few friends and set out to begin transforming our society.

 RISE announces new National Organiser

RISE announces new National Organiser

RISE Scotland is pleased to announce the appointment of our new National Organiser - Deborah Waters Deborah comes to the role with a wealth of political experience. Originally a Labour Party member who helped organise Labour for Independence during the referendum campaign, Deborah quickly got involved with Radical Independence Campaign and The Left Project shortly after.

A mainstay of RISE since its inception, Deborah stood as a candidate in Glasgow during the Holyrood elections in 2016. Deborah has since immersed herself in fighting homelessness within the city, starting up and maintaining a drop-in and day kitchen for those facing life on the streets.

In a professional capacity, she has a 25 year record of outstanding community organising, working with some of the city's most vulnerable groups. A carer for much of that time, she has first hand experience of some of the worst exploitation within the care industry. It is these injustices that have helped shape her politics and given her the drive to make RISE a success and a force to be reckoned with in Scotland.

We wish Deborah all the best in this role and look forward to working with her to transform our society.

RISE Welcomes range of motions passed at the SNP Conference.

RISE Welcomes range of motions passed at the SNP Conference.

It would have been easy to baulk at the strange choice of slogan for this years SNP Conference. The word ‘PROGRESS’ emblazoned on every possible screen in the SECC may have given some people horrible flashbacks of New Labour, but the there was plenty to look forward to from the SNP Conference.



The 3 day event started well with a motion passing from the party’s youth wing to increase the minimum age of military recruitment from 16 to 18. This should go a long way to preventing military recruitment in schools a policy we have long campaigned on.


Over the course of the week there was motions and announcements ranging from increased financial help for those wishing to retrain as teachers, free sanitary products to be made available in places of education to feasibility studies being made into a Land Value Tax and a commitment to end the Public Sector pay cap.


One of the biggest announcements was made by Scotlands First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, in the closing speech she announced plans to create a publicly owned not for profit energy company in the lifetime of this parliament.


We fully support all of the above motions and welcome the competition between the SNP and Corbyn’s Labour party in the battle to move further to the left. We believe this can only benefit the majority of people in Scotland who are facing ever increasing hardships, however the public spats about who is has made the least cuts does nobody any favours. Austerity will only be defeated not by fighting each other but a direct combined assault on a crumbling Tory leadership.


There are of course things we do not agree with and statements we would not have made ourselves, we feel it is disingenuous to parrot the figures championed by the Conservatives around low unemployment. Today’s low unemployment is fueled by increasingly precarious employment and bogus self employment industries, our economy can never be sustainable whilst thousands of young workers rely on these as a primary source of income.


Traditional economists are still scratching their heads as to why wages have not risen in the face such low numbers of unemployment, the answer for us is clear to see. In a world with little job security and atomised workplaces fueled by privatisation, workers are prevented and bullied out of achieving increased terms and conditions.


Our workplaces and economies must radically change if we are to create a society where our communities can truly flourish. Independence therefore is still the key to achieving a better Scotland. We must continue to fight for independence on the same ideas and grassroots level as we did pre 2014. The vision for a better Scotland was most tangible when the power lay with the people, the local yes groups and neighbourhood campaigns.


In the fight for a better future, our struggle must be rooted in issues and campaigns that can begin to transform our society into that vision we all shared for an Independent Scotland.

RISE Scotland call for National Rent Cap and 100,000 homes to be built.

RISE Scotland call for National Rent Cap and 100,000 homes to be built.

To 'celebrate' National Housing Day, we have launched a National campaign calling for a National Rent Cap across all rental sectors and the mass construction of 100,000 publicly owned homes.

These homes will be democratically run by the tenants themselves, built to the most energy efficient standards and rent pegged 1/5th of a minimum wage workers salary.

Drastic times call for drastic measures.

The need for this is undeniable with approximately 150,000 people on waiting lists for social housing and 40% of all households suffering from fuel poverty. Scotland faces a housing crisis. 

At the same time rents are steadily increasing, frequently ahead of inflation and ahead of average wage rises for tenants. This squeeze is increasing poverty, ill health and giving abusive landlords free reign to act outside the law.

All of this is adding to the extreme pressure put on our housing services already unable to cope, with more and more people being made homeless and even dying on the street (1 every week in Glasgow alone). We feel that in such extreme times, extreme measures must be taken.

Support RISE - Scotland's call for the Scottish Government at Holyrood to immediately enact a cap on all rent increases in Scotland in both the private and social sector. We further call for the building of 100,000  publicly owned houses for affordable rent, built to minimise fuel poverty and to stringent environmental standards.

We have done it before from 1945 to 1951 the UK government built 1.2 million publicly owned houses. This laid the groundwork for decades of improvement in people’s lives. We believe a similar house building programme can do the same again, lifting hundreds of thousands out of poverty and into prosperity.

An extensive house building scheme such as this would serve to stimulate our domestic economy, provide jobs and apprenticeships for thousands of young workers. Scotland has invested heavily on infrastructure projects to help business grow, now it’s time to invest in housing to help people grow.


Sign the petition here

Join RISE in the fight for housing fit for this century.

RISE Women Stand With The KJA

RISE Women Stand With The KJA

On 12th November, Turkish security forces raided and shut down the building of the Free Women’s Congress (KJA) in Diyarbakir. KJA are a Kurdish women’s group who have, for over 40 years, fought for women’s liberation, democracy and the rights of self-determination for the Kurdish people.

The group has experienced continuous harassment from the Turkish State in the past six months, with officers raiding KJA premises four times and seizing internal documents such as registration books and membership lists. KJA is the latest victim of state repression, as over 370 NGOs have been shut down in recent months by the Turkish authorities.

RISE Women stand in solidarity with the Free Women’s Congress in their struggle against the repression of Turkish State security forces. We know despite the intolerable conditions under which you are working, you will continue to resist authoritarianism and fight for the rights of your people, and your activism inspires us to continue the fight against women’s oppression wherever it is found. We stand with you, in sisterhood and solidarity, and hope that this message of support gives you strength to continue the fight for liberation and democracy.

Campaign For Equal Pay Grows

Campaign For Equal Pay Grows

Last Thursday was labelled Equal Pay Day by equality campaigners, as it effectively represents the last day of the year that women will be earning in relation to men. The gender pay gap currently sits at around 13.9%, meaning that women will effectively be working for nothing from Thursday until 2017.

Despite the fact that it has been more than four decades since the Equal Pay Act, it is clear that women are still facing significant barriers in terms of pay and employment. In a report released earlier this year by the Institute for Fiscal Studies, it was revealed that women are facing a “motherhood penalty,” where the gender pay gap widens significantly for women after the birth of their first child. Women are far more likely than men to work in low-paid and undervalued sectors of the economy such as care, and 63% of people not receiving the living wage are women.

This situation is unacceptable. RISE Women calls on the government to work with campaigners, employers and trade unions to tackle the problem of gender wage segregation and widen access for women into more senior roles in the workplace. It is time that the work traditionally done by women is given equal value. This must be done by the introduction and enforcement of a real Living Wage, which will make a positive impact upon women working in the lowest paid sectors. We also reiterate our call for unpaid carers, the vast majority of whom are women, to be paid a Living Wage for the invaluable work they do in looking after the most vulnerable people in our society whilst saving the economy billions of pounds annually. We further demand that the government provide affordable, high quality, universally available childcare that would be transformative to the lives of women with children.

RISE Central Scotland Meetings

RISE Central Scotland Meetings

RISE are hosting public meetings in Cumbernauld and Motherwell in the coming weeks to highlight some of the very important campaigns taking place in those areas.

Under the title, 'Campaigning Communities, Defending Democracy,' RISE is offering a platform to various campaign groups as part of its declared intent to build an alternative to an economic model that is failing to deliver for the vast majority of people.

Cumbernauld RISE candidate for last May’s election Kevin McVey commented:

 “It is important that space is provided to not only hear how people are challenging decisions that can damage our communities and our environment but to share experiences and ideas about building an alternative that prioritises people not profit.

 "RISE is delighted to offer that space because there are so much that these diverse campaigns share in terms of challenging the received wisdom that decision making rests only with powerful corporate and political interests.”

RISE has invited representatives from Cumbernauld’s anti-fracking campaign, save Monklands Orthopaedics A & E, campaigners against library closures in North Lanarkshire and Save Cumbernauld Tax Office.

Cumbernauld: Wednesday 26th October in the new Muirfield Community Centre at 7.30pm.

Motherwell: Wednesday 9th November in Daisy Park Community Centre, Cassels Street at 7:30pm.

Public meetings, events and regional meetings are also being organised across Scotland.



Support staff in colleges across Scotland will go on strike next Tuesday 6th September in a dispute over pay. Despite Colleges Scotland promising a return to national bargaining and an equal pay increase, Scotland’s college employers offered a £450 flat-rate increase to college lecturers, but only offered an increase of £230 to support staff.

This cost of living increase has been set at a considerably lower level for support staff in colleges around the country. Support staff including cleaning, catering, security, classroom assistants, technicians and administrative staff, have voted overwhelmingly for strike action.

Support staff are striking to demand that they are afforded the same cost of living increase as their teaching colleagues. College bosses have as yet failed to offer support staff in our colleagues a fair and equitable sum to settle the dispute. Lecturers and support staff are both affected equally by the rising cost of living and therefore any pay settlement should reflect this reality.

Chris Greenshields, chairman of UNISON’s Further Education Committee said, “Our demand is simple and fair. Pay college support staff the same amount that you gave to our teaching colleagues. We work for the same colleges, help deliver the same courses, support the same students and deserve the same cost of living increase.”

RISE fully supports the industrial action been taken by union members in their fight for fair pay in our colleges; we urge you to visit your local college and offer your support and solidarity on the picket line in any way that you can. Support staff are an indispensable commodity in student’s learning environment, and deserve fair and equal pay.

After Brexit: RISE ready to support new drive for independence

After Brexit: RISE ready to support new drive for independence

The UK has voted for exiting the European Union. The immediate consequences will be faced most by the hundreds of thousands of immigrants and refugees in Scotland and across Britain who face a more racist and intimidating environment that has been whipped up by some of the leaders on both the Remain and Leave side of the referendum campaign.

RISE stands against anti-migrant racism and xenophobia and believe a strong and united opposition is needed on the streets, in workplaces and communities throughout the UK. Everyone who has moved to this country has as much right to be here as anyone else, and we must protect and defend that right completely.

The ramifications of Brexit in Scotland - where 63% of voters and all 32 local authorities voted Remain -  make a second Scottish Independence Referendum in a timely fashion absolutely essential to end our democratic deficit in the UK once and for all.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has indicated indyref2 is highly likely to happen, and RISE believes it must happen if the will of the people of Scotland is to be respected.

We will throw our full weight behind a renewed Yes movement to make sure a Yes majority is secured. In doing so, RISE will be making the case for a socialist Scotland based on the redistribution of wealth and power away from elites and to the people of Scotland.

We will also stand with radical left parties internationally in demanding a democratised Europe and an end to austerity and racist policies towards refugees.

- No to anti-migrant racism and xenophobia

- Yes to a second independence referendum

- Yes to a democratised, anti-austerity Europe.

RISE members will be meeting locally and nationally in the coming weeks to collectively discuss how best to move these and other issues forward after Brexit.