The UK school students' strike, 1985 - Steven Johns

Striking schoolchildren march in Liverpool, 1985. Photo by Dave Sinclair

A short history of a successful national walkout of up to a quarter of a million school students against the Conservative government's workfare Youth Training Scheme.

Positive affect as coercive strategy: conditionality, activation and the role of psychology in UK government workfare programmes

A journal article on the use of psychology in workfare to erase the experience and effects of social and economic inequalities and to construct a psychological ideal that links unemployment primarily to psychological deficit. This, in turn the authors argue, authorises the extension of state — and state-contracted — surveillance to psychological characteristics.

Post-election reflections: how the Tories wrecked the economy and why Labour couldn’t take advantage


Now the election is over, it seems time to take stock of the last 5 years. A lot has been written about the horrific social reforms of the Tory-Lib Dem coalition government, on tuition fees, workfare, sanctions, privatisations and cuts - but the mainstream analysis, and public opinion, seems to be that for all that the Tories were at least competent from a macroeconomic perspective. This couldn't be further from the truth.

A Spoonful of Sugar: Childcare, Work and #Budget2015

An analysis of the changes to childcare and paid parental leave in the 2015 Australian Federal Budget

Rock bottom or GTFO

On Big Issues and Big Society.

Starvation for coming in late - JCP ESOL teaching and benefit sanctions.

Through the growth of JobCentre mandated classes, ESOL (English to Speakers of Other Languages) teachers are becoming complicit in the sanctioning of student's benefits - leaving them destitute. This article argues that we should refuse to give the JobCentre any information which could lead to a sanction.

Taking refuge in struggle: protests and hunger strikes in four asylum seeker detention centres across the UK

Harmondsworth IRC

A wave of protests and repression has spread across the UK's expansive asylum seeker detention complex, with four centres reporting unrest thus far. Detainee support groups report hunger strikes, sitdown protests and a flurry of organising in Harmondsworth, Colnbrook, Brook House and Campsfield, against both their lack of legal recourse and the squalid conditions in the detention centres.

Unproductive bodies, part 1: narcotisation of dependency

A schematic look at positive psychology's deployment within the UK's workfare regime and the position of the substance-dependent body as a model in the production of subjectivity. This forms the first part of a short series on positive psychology, work, and the production of unproductive bodies.

The strange case of the Huddersfield Two

A belated report regarding the arrest and trial of two Huddersfield anarchists at a bedroom tax protest last year.

Parents of children with disabilities occupy Polish parliament

Parents who cannot get by on the pittance paid by the government to care for people with disabilities take action.