Group Title: Struggle (Kingston, Jamaica)
Title: Struggle
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Struggle official organ of the Workers Liberation League
Uniform Title: Struggle (Kingston, Jamaica)
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 41 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Workers' Liberation League (Jamaica)
Workers' Liberation League (Jamaica)
Workers Party of Jamaica
Publisher: The League
Place of Publication: Kingston
Publication Date: April 8, 1977
Frequency: bimonthly[mar.-apr. 1986-]
biweekly[ former -july 13, 1984]
monthly[ former aug. 1984-feb. 1986]
Subject: Labor movement -- Periodicals -- Jamaica   ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Jamaica   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: Jamaica
Summary: Struggle was published first as a mimeographed newsletter in 1974 when the Workers Liberation League was formed. It was edited by Rupert Lewis and he continued as editor when Struggle became the organ of the Workers Party of Jamaica in 1978. In the 1980s editors included Elean Thomas, Elaine Wallace and Ben Brodie. The Workers Liberation League grew out of the political initiative of academics - Trevor Munroe, Rupert Lewis as well as Don Robotham, Derek Gordon who studied in the University of Chicago in the early 1970s and were connected to activists in the Black Panther Movement and African-American radicals in the Communist Party of the United States. The latter group formed the Paul Bogle League which brought together academics, working class and community activists who read and discussed Karl Marx’s Capital and Lenin’s political writings and sought to build on Jamaica’s radical traditions in the trade union movement and in the People’s National Party from the 1930s to the 1960s. The Paul Bogle League was also involved with the formation of the University and Allied Workers Union in the early 1970s and worked with the Independent Trade Union Action Council. Politically the Workers Liberation League gave critical support to Michael Manley’s democratic socialist program in the 1970s.
Issuing Body: Vols. for -1978 issued by Workers' Liberation League; 1979- by Workers' Party of Jamaica.
General Note: Description based on surrogate of: Issue no. 28 (June 16, 1977); title from caption.
General Note: Latest issue consulted: Apr.-May 1986 (surrogate).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00100337
Volume ID: VID00023
Source Institution: Florida International University: Digital Library of the Caribbean
Holding Location: Florida International University: Digital Library of the Caribbean
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 05378247
lccn - sn 91021299
oclc - 5378247

Full Text



Vo14 No
aPRq n I07"


SINCE January when the Prime Minister
rejected the imperialist path of the IMF
the government has been feeling the full
pressure of the imperialists, who are
demanding every cent of the huge profits
and interest from their foreign invest-
ment even while they cut off all aid and
refuse any assistance.

This has forced the government to cut
down the import of goods so that they
can meet these payments. This is lead-
ing to more layoffs and food shortages
which are seriously affecting working
people and the poor.

In the face of this, the government has
begun to waver, allowing the situation

to drift while the rich profiteer and
smuggle money and goods out of the coun-
try and hardship is growing on the poor.

This failure to act firmly is confusing
the people and laying the ground for the
comeback of imperialism and the big man.
In the interest of the working people
the Prime Minister must act now to de-
clare a State of Economic Emergency. He
must take direct charge of this emergen-
cy in the interests of the nation, of
the poor and oppressed.

If food and basic goods vital to the
survival of working people are going to
be short, then the Prime Minister must
use emergency powers to prevent or ease
the hardship. Adequate supplies of con-
densed and cow's milk, tinned meats,
chicken, flour and household necessities
must be obtained from friendly countries

- the socialist countries first and for-
emost, and strict controls must be put
on their distribution and price to prev-
ent hoarding and price increases.

If raw materials are going to be short,
then a system must be set up to obtain
these materials for all the important
factories and ways found to protect the
livelihood of those laid off.

All rate increases such as water, lights
post office, must be banned, and no new
taxes placed on the poor.

Land must be given to the land-hungry
country people to bring justice to the
farmer and speed up production.

These things cannot wait. The Prime
Minister must act now, in the interests
of the people.


Say Caribbean Marxists perialst unity, hilst in Guya

DR TREVOR MUNROE returned to Jamaica on
April 4 from Guyana where he attended a
consultative meeting of English-speaking
Caribbean Marxist Parties and Groups
held March 30-April 1. At this meeting
the call was made to step up the work
among the working class, peasantry and
progressive sections of the middle class
and intellectuals in order to build str-
ong communist groups and parties and a
broad anti-imperialist front.

The meeting carried out an assessment of
the political, economic and social situ-
ation in the region, stressing the con-
tinuing danger posed by US imperialism
to the progress and well-being of the
working people of the Caribbean.

The delegates stro-
ngly supported the
view that the achi-
evement of social-
ism could not be-
come a reality un-
less democratic
rights and freedoms
are respected and

the role of the
working people in
political and soci-
al life is enlarg-
ed. They pledged
to struggle for the
incorporation into
of a Convention on

Human Rights.

The meeting recog-
nized the need for
and revolutionary
movements in the
Caribbean to forge
close links with
other Marxist-Len-
inist organisations
hnd. liberation mov-
ements, with the
democratic working
class movements in
the advanced capi-
talist countries,
as well as with
peace forces all
over the world,
particularly with
the Soviet Union,
Cuba and other Soc-
ialist countries.

The partisan groups
pledged to work for
Caribbean anti-im-

Uonli dent that -
the developing sit-
uation, great pros-
pects for victory
are opening up.


le e elegation
led by Dr. Munroe
met with the Soviet
Ambassador to Guya-
na and had an ih-

formal exchange of
views on matters of
mutual interest,

Organisations from
Barbados, St. Vin-
cent, Guyana and
Trinidad were also
represented at the

DR. TREVOR MUNROE, General Secretary of the WLL, exchanging
views with members of Guyana's People's Progressive Party dur-
ing a break.


OVER thirty un- the fact that we very in
unionised clerical the clerical staff this ti
workers at KIW, the are the workers ourselv
largest hardware that handle the ma- so that
concern in the is- jor papers of the uggle a
land, have come out Company. We have omic sa
in support of eight evidence that the to get
of their fellow sales of the Compa- pittanc
workers who were ny have not decrea- can get
pushed out in the sed and 1976 was our kid
street by the man- the most profitable pay the
agement on Friday, year in the history and fur
March 25th. of the Hardware. "That w

When a Struggle re-
porter contacted a
clerical worker at
Hardware, he stated
that: "This laying
off of eight work-
ers at one time is
a very strange
thing. My reason
for saying this is

"We think that the
management is play-
ing politics with
our jobs. Cn Fri-
day when we strike
we decided to call
the TUC to repres-
ent us. We were
not unionised. But
we tkin; thaA it is.

voted a
the ele
stop th
from ex]
as they
with po<
who the;
me a te
y9H deb.

;portant at
me to get
'es unionised
we can str-
gainst econ-
Ibotage and
the little
e so that we
food, send
s to school,
rent man
niture man.
as what we
gainst in
ction to
e capitalist
and doing
have a mind
or people,
y make poor.
I you mi
it dread


APRI-O 1077


UAWU Demands **************************

UNION delegates
must, as of right,
be able to come in-
to the plant at any
time. The workers
of each plant or
establishment must
have the right to
hold meetings, or-
ganise activities,
distribute litera-
ture at agreed tim-

Erployers who dis-
miss workers becau-
se they are involv-
ed in trade union
work, should be se-
verely punished.

These are two of a
list of demands pr-
epared by the UAWZU
and sent to the
other 14 trade uni-
ons, the Ministry
of Labour and the
National Task Force

of the Production
Plan. The last is-
sue of Stru'ggle
carried demands for
moves and laws to
stop lay-offs of
workers. To make
sure that those who
are being laid off
or have been laid
off already, get
proper redundancy
payments. These
would include so-
called "independent
contractors" who
work regularly for
employers, such as
certain daily paid
workers and taxi

This set of demands
deals with the
strengthening of
the workers' orga-
nisations, so that
the workers can pr-

OVER 200 teachers have sent a petition
to Prime Minister Manley protesting ag-
al-st the act o the reactionary leader-
ship of the Jamaica Teachers Association
in expelling 8 progressive teachers from
the Association.

The teachers, who are members of the TD-
JTA, .ere expelled from the Association
by a decision taken at a JTA General
Council Meeting or. March 26. They are
John Haughton, Joan French, Paulette
Chevannes, Anthony Perry, Harry Jackson,
Herman McFarlane, Wes Van Riel and Rud-
,, ard Brow

otect their stand-
ard ofliving and
help to move the
country forward.

Delegates must get
time off with pay,
to educate themsel-
ves in trade union
work or to do offi-
cial union business.

There should be a
law to prevent em-
ployers from firing
or transferring un-
ion delegates with-
out discussing this
with the union

The Labour Rela-
tions and Industri-
al Disputes Act
(LRIDA) must be am-
ended to make shor-
ter the time in
which an employer
must reply to a un-

ion wnicn served a
rights claim. It
is now 15 days,
UAWU says it must
be 7 days. If the
employer does not
reply within 7
days, a compulsory
poll should be tak-
en within 21 days.

That the Employmrent
Act of 1974 be ame-
nded to protect wo-
rkers who have been
unfairly dismissed
from their jobs. At
present the law
does not deal with
this problem. UAwlT
calls for the ex-
pansion of the In-
dustrial Disputes
Tribunal to deal
with such cases and
to put unfairly
dismissed workers
back in their jobs.


The teachers asked the JTA leaders and
the country: "How can persecution of
progressive teachers solve the problem
of so many thousands of our youth leav-
ing school illiterate? How can this
give food, books, materials, to our stu-
dents or give security to teachers in
their jobs?"

They said that the backwardness of the
education system was partly the result
of how the colonial-minded leaders of
the JTA ran education, without being ac-
countable to the majority of teachers
and the people of the country.

The TDJTA recently drew up proposals to
improve the education system over a five
The teachers were expelled from the As- year period. These include wiping out
sociation even while a case was in the illiteracy and making sure that all
Supreme Court to decide the right of the children, rich or poor, get the same
teachers to he members of the TDJTA, a continuous education for ten years of
grouping which is fighting for progres- their life (6 to 16).
sive changes within the JTA and the bet-
torment of the education system for the The teachers have pledged to continue to
children of the working people, organise teachers around these demands.

At a new conference last Tuesday, the "In carrying out this task, we know that
teachers ointed, out that at no time in classroom teachers will rise to the cha-
the "disciplinary hearings" were they or enge TO ORGANISE ON WHATEVER BASIS, to
their later told the nature of the continue this just, humane and democrat-
charges against them. ic cause."




For \ w


I th-s iss:,e begins a rew column by
asert riOwn a fulZ-time trade union
orga:iser, Vice-President of UAWU, and
conrn.ity activist. This colton wiZl
ial t'th trade union and community ac-

NOT a day can pass without you hear of
workers being laid off. Many of these
workers are youths who have just left
school and started working. Others are
workers with many years service.

Many workers believe that the laws of
Jamaica really protect their interest.
It is only in times of crisis like thel
that we as workers realize that the lau
do not defend us workers but instead
protect the interest of the capitalist
factory owners. Many of us workers
think that if we are laid off we can
collect "a bag of money" and set up our
own business. It is only when we get
our cheque that we realize that this is


The law which deals with lay offs is
called The Termination of Employment
Redundancy Payments Act. This law say
that no matter how long you work for
the capitalist, if 6 months pass after
he has laid you off and you did not ma
a claim in writing you can't claim for
any redundancy payment after that.

The law also says that if you do not
work for over 2 years you can't claim
redundancy (lay off) pay. However, no
- matter how much you work for over 20
years you can't get more than 20 years
redundancy pay.

The law says that when a worker is lai
off and is to get redundancy payment,
must get 2 weeks pay for each year of
service that he has done. This means
a worker works for 7 years and is get-
ting $25 per week, he would get only 2
times $25 (=$50) times 7 (years) equal
$350. That is all that a worker would
get for 7 years hard labour (worse that
prison) .

Workers and their unions must realize
that only when a party which has in it
only people who defend the workers and
poor people will laws wh~h really bent
fit the workers be passer In the meat
time all progressive forces must strug'
gle to get these laws changed.

Every employer should be forced to give
workers at least 3 months notice before
he can lay off any worker. Secondly
there should be no limit on how lone
workers have to work before they can
redundancy pay. Thirdly, workers shout
be free to claim redundancy payment at
any time after they are laid off. TheK
should be no 6 months limit.

Workers must begin to organise and get
their unions and Members of Parliament
to support progressive changes in all
existing laws which affect workers.

INDIRA GANDHI'S Congress Party received Party was also sup- corrupt and right- destroy the urban halt, sabotaged
a massive defeat in last month's elec- ported by capital- wing capitalist who ghetto homes of Congress landlo
tions. Mrs Gandhi was defeated by a ists, who saw in hated communism and hundreds of thous-
coalition of capitalists, reactionary the State of Emer- the Soviet Union. ands of poor peo- Mrs Gandhi, urg
religious parties and opportunist "soci- gency the chance to He led them in tur- pie, driving them on by her right
alists", calling themselves the Janata enrich themselves ning the State of homeless into the wing and angered
or "People's" Party. and brutalize the Emergency into a streets. They cal- the concern she
people, reign of terror ag- led this "slum cle- by the Soviet I
Mrs Gandhi lost not port amongst the ainst the workers arance", although for the situation
because she locked people 18 months They pushed forward e ,d rural poor. no new homes were cooled relation

up those wno wanted
to overthrow her
government, but be-
cause she turned
away from the peo-
ple who put her in-
to power and took
measures which were
harmful to them.

The crushing of the
conspiracy against
her and the pro-
gramme of reforms
initially announced
by Mrs Gandhi gain-
ed her great sup-

ago. Prices were
held down or reduc-
ed, food became av-
ailable, and land
reforms were start-
ed. Mrs Gandhi at-
tacked the CIA and
strengthened rela-
tions with the So-
viet Union. The
Communist Party of
India, over half a
million strong, su-
pported these meas-

But the Congress

Mrs Gandhi's son-
Sanjay Gandhi, a


with the aid of po-
lice and military
brutality and cor-
rupt party offici-
als, he forced some
seven million Indi-
an poor people,
mostly men, to be
sterilized. Hund-
reds of thousands
fled their villages
and hid in the fie-
lds to escape this
terror. He also
led the right wing
in a campaign to

ever built.

The capitalists and
landowners persuad-
ed Mrs Gandhi to
use the State of
Emergency to ban
strikes and cut wa-
ges. nWile their
profits were incre-
asing, prices were
more and more al-
lowed to rise and
the cost of living
took a sharp turn
upwards. The land
reform came to a

)rds .

ed by

with her major

The last nail in
her coffin came
when she rejected
the call of the
Communist Party of
India to turn back
the right-wing pol-
icies and arrested
thousands of party
militants when they
organised the peo-
ple to struggle ag-

Corfd Pj 4

Jamaicans See Cuban EIallet
THE quality of art the Jamaican people recently (Marcn 2-- experience and str- Comnittees for the ls, wherever the
under socialism was when the National 29). uggles of the work- Defence of the Rev- people are. They
once again brought Ballet Company of ing people. olution in Cuba as are an important
to the attention of Cuba performed here The Company came well as other peop- part of the cultur-
here as part of the Top photograph les' organisations, al and political
cultural exchange shows Comrade Alic- The Company perfor- life of Cuba.
agreement between ia Alonso in per- ms for all the Cub-
the Jamaican Gover- formance. She is an people. They The picture below
nment and the Cuban first dancer (prima teach dance in sch- shows a movement
Government. They ballerina). She is cols, they teach from the dance "The
did not charge for also a resolute workers about art River and the
their services and fighter for social- and the history of Woods". This dance
the Jamaican Gover- ism. In fact, all ballet. They per- is based on an Afr-
nment was responsi- members of the bal- form in factories, ican legend.
ble for accommodat- let company work in ane fields, schoo-

4 1 .. I* If/ I
IN a statement sent
in to Struggle Dr
George Beckford has
spoken out against
racism in Jamaica.

The statement is
his response to the
Adventure Inn inci-
dent in which the
management refused
on March 4 to serve
a party of govern-
nent advisors, in-
cluding Dr Beck-
ford, because some
were wearing knit-
ted tams.

Dr Beckford said
that "Jews can
wear their tams
(skull cap head-
gear) anywhere
they please in Ja-
maica not so for
Rasta and dread".

ie summed up his
response by saying
"as a Jamaican I
am frankly shocked
that our society
still tolerates
and encourages ra-
cism of this kind.
Racism must be wi-
ped from our socie-
ty in all forms.
That is part of the
struggle ahead. The
Adventure Inn inci-
dent must be treat-
ed as merely an ex-
ample of what goes
on every day; inci-
dents which never
came to public at-
ConIt P34

ing them.

The Company has ab-
out 50 members. As
well as performing
top-rate ballet be-
fore packed houses
at the Ward Thea-
tre, they insisted
that there should
be a free show for
children. So over
8000 were treated
to a show at the
National Arena.

This is in keeping
with Cuba's view of
culture as some-
thing to which all
working people are
exposed and which
is enriched b the

IN the following
column STRUGGLE is
publishing opinions
on the Home Guard.
This is the first
of several letters
on the topic. We
invite the views of
our readers. (EDI-

MANY comrades have sure that the laws can discipline
been discussing wh- which the capital- them.
ether or not we ists pass to prot-
should join the ect their interest Home Guards must be
Home Guard. This are obeyed. organised to prot-
shows that we are ect communities,
not clear on the will the Home Guard defend working-cla-
purpose of the Home be used to do these ss people, and not
Guard. things? Can the used to defend the
Home Guard stop po- interest of the ca-
The new Home Guard lice brutality and pitalist class as
is aimed at stren- improve police- Seaga is calling
gthening the pres- community relations? for when he says to
strengthen the po-
ent police force. 'Home Guards should lice force.

The police force is
not only there to
stop crime, but is
used to defend the
capitalists when
workers go on stri-
ke, beat up poor
people and to make

be based in their
own community. Home This is the only
Guards should be basis on which wor-
elected from commu- king people should
nity organisations join the Home Guard.
and therefore res-
ponsible to these
organisations who

Racism At

Adventure Inn


Tne lack of irriga- on the farm and to ing Ministry, but deligently and ear- under the Land Le
Luaa 158 tion is the ai the country. There leased to us for nestly calling on se. And so we c
and Lease problem: which we as is a river, the five years. We kn- the Minister of Ag- play our part in
ar Black Ri- farmers face on the Black River, w ch so as a fact that iculture to take fod to
ve sixty land :e cultivate, notPl oupr
ver sixty land we cultivate, runs not very far part of the land steps in getting the economic dev
Shave signed The type of soil we away from the which is occupied the land on a firm opment of this as
tion asking farm can produce farm. by farmers is more footing under the count ry.
government different types of suitable for farm- Land Lease Progra-
ito the prob- crops and can give "uana Land ease, ing rather than for mne so we can en-
irrigation two crops a year. on which we are pl- housing. sure working the

ON the
acre LI
farm n
ver, o'
a petit
that g1
look i3
lem of
and pr
for th(

aced, is under the
banner of the Hous-

"We the farmers are



land for 49 years
like other projects

Metal Box Workers



'*ElbS ii a ..crd : i -c Council delegation from Zimbabwe and Latin America who
aLt:,nded rally un :lrch 26 in Kingst; o to revive the Jamaica Peace Council. A
ajcr .P eatingng ''ill be held in Poland later this vear, at which the JPC will be


GROUND was broken day was a histori-
for the Seivright cal day for the
Gardens Community community and our
Centre on March 28, country. The day
1977. was marked as one
of community dev-
All speakers at elopment. The
the function em- centre was seen as
phasised that the a place where wor-

Mrs GHANDI'S defeat.

Fronm Page a
ainst these poli-

This defeat of Mrs
Gandhi is a severe
Ilow to the progres-
sive movement. But
there are already
signs that the gang
of opportunists who
came together to
defeat Mrs Gandhi

will be unable to
meet the hopes and
aspirations of the
Indian people, as
they squabble amon-
gst themselves for
office and positi-
on. It would be a
bitter pill for the
CIA and the Americ-
an imperialists if
their new attempt
to enslave India

king people and
youths can organi-
se themselves ar-
ound day to day
issues that affect
them in the com-
munity and the
country; to educ-
ate themselves
culturally and po-
litically and to
organise the peo-
ple against imper-
ialism and capita-

A call for all you-
th and working peo-
ple within the com-
munity and the cou-
Seivri gh
Where: 33 Mahoe Dri
When : Saturday 9d
Music by: SCUiL
I aa-.--,------------

ntry to participate
in the struggle for
better living con-
ditions and strugg-
le for this at the
local level in the
factory and the
community was made
at the groundbreak-

A call was also
made for unity am-
ong all working
people despite
their political be-
liefs, and that th-
ey must not be foo-
led by the big ca-
pitalist who at all
times tries to div-
ide communities and
workers at the

From Page 3 led instead to an SpNWa
even mightier revo-
I lutionary flood on NEW BOOK
RAC M this continent of
tension becau 600 million people. STRUGGLES OF
poorer or less well-**STRUGGLES OF-
known Black Janaic- '.'uh U arar' ove-
ns are insulted in ackinTHE JAMAICAN
this manner in the-
ir own country." S a.2, pi 17
Adventure Inn PEOPLE Price $1.00
Adventure Inn IS
owned by million- h.5 -ter Trevor unroe and Don 1obotham
aire Moses Matalon. ailabl i boo s a a ai
r:' : *2$c* Available in bookstores and pharmacy

Face lay-Of
OVER 400 workers
employed at the
Metal Box Ja. Ltd.,
Spanish Town Road,
face the possibil-
ity of being laid
off anytime now.

These workers will
add to the growing
list of workers who
have already been
laid off. Metal
Box, whose headqua-
rters is in the ra-
cist and apartheid
South Africa, has
always made big
profits out of the
labour of the Jam-
aican workers.

Recently the work-
ers of Metal Box
went on strike and
this affected many
other factories.
Metal Box is the
only supplier of
metal tins in Jam-
aica. The workers
were recently told
that the Metal Box
office in England
is unwilling to
send down the nec-
essary tin plates
to keep the factory

This is an act of
sabotage by this
imperialist compa-
ny. The company
knows that if Me-
tal Box closes in
Jamaica, not only
will 40d workers al
the factory and
their families be
left to starve, bui
also other workers
who depend on the
tin cans from Meta
Box to do their

StruggZe calls on
the workers to or-
ganise themselves
and to get their
union to make re-
presentation to the
management and the
government to pre-
vent the factory
from laying off
'workers and from

Such an important
factory should not
be in the hands of
private people -
worst, in the hand
of racist South Af
ricans. Why can't
the government talk
over and run Metal


mm51M ORGAN Of 011

VOL4 Nl1
APRIL 1977

es Printed by E.P. Printery, Hagley Park

But the current
drought caused a
serious loss to us

ovide iand
Sfarmers to


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