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(en) France, Union Communiste Libertaire UCL AL #305 - Spotlight, Mutual aid: Militant brigades for class solidarity (fr, it, pt)[machine translation]

Date Tue, 26 May 2020 08:58:40 +0300

"Only the people save the people": this is the idea which motivated the Popular Solidarity Brigades, mutual aid teams in the direction of the most precarious layers of the popular classes. ---- Noting that the capitalist disorder had led to the Covid-19 pandemic, and that the state would hardly help the working classes, who would nevertheless be the first to pay the price, direct solidarity networks were spontaneously set up in both rural and urban areas. To combine local solidarity action and political demand, comrades close to the militant media ACTA first launched a call to form Popular Solidarity Brigades (BSP), following the model of the Brigate Volontarie Per l'Emergenza ("brigades Emergency Volunteers") launched in Milan, Italy.
Quickly, many groups were formed all over France, and UCL activists took part in several places. In Paris and Lyon, UCL premises are made available for collection, storage and distribution.

Each brigade adapts to local realities. In Montreuil, a BSP thus set up in a perspective of class mutual aid around the squat occupied rue de Stalingrad by nearly 200 undocumented workers from the former home of migrant workers in rue Bara. Two offices were also opened - one in the AERI space, rue Etienne-Marcel, the other in Haut-Montreuil - to cook, collect meals prepared by residents, collect hygiene products and distribute to those who need it. As soon as a need is identified, the brigade organizes itself to meet it.

The group is also trying to set up tutoring for children for whom dropping out of school due to confinement could prove to be catastrophic.

Developing our solutions
The BSPs also carry political demands and watchwords. In Île-de-France, these are five major unitary demands: the requisition of empty hotels to house the homeless, the regularization of undocumented migrants, the freezing of rents, the stoppage of work in non-essential sectors and the allocation of containment income.

The BSPs have the will to organize themselves beyond confinement, even when the health situation has changed. There is every interest in pushing for the development of this network and in making the link with the wrestling unions which also act in the current period and will be on the front line in the "after". We must anticipate the economic fallout from the current crisis on the proletariat, and already defend post-containment political necessities, such as the socialization of the health system and the pharmaceutical industry, or the requisition and reorganization. of the production and distribution system, on self-managed bases, under popular control.

Akina, Nathan and Khalil (UCL Montreuil)

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