Yesterday was to have been the day of our big demo against furniture recyclers Bulky Bob’s, demanding that the Liverpool council contractor got rid of workfare. But then of course, the fact that we’d exposed them and were threatening a demo had been enough to force a statement that the company would no longer take part in any work programmes.
So instead we held a much more low key demonstration, outside a major Tesco store in the city centre, and outside a Poundland, where we’ve got a really good reception from the general public in recent weeks.
This particular Tesco store is at a busy intersection, and on Saturday lunchtimes there are hundreds of people passing every minute. Our leaflets went extremely quickly, but perhaps not quick enough for the store manager. He came out a few times to move us an inch or two, and then just as we were about to get rid of our last few statements against Tesco’s use of workfare, a police car showed up, and cops went in to talk.
Anyway, we were off to Poundland regardless, where we got our usual welcome. It seems quite clear that the customers of the cheapest shops are the ones who best appreciate what we are talking about. Perhaps this isn’t surprising. They are probably the most likely to face workfare themselves, or to know others who do. Many were easily persuaded to shop at alternative cheap outlets, and others vowed to tell their friends about workfare, spreading the word about Poundland’s use of the anti-working class workfare system.
With Christmas – and therefore last minute Christmas shopping – coming up, we are looking for another winnable target like Bulky Bob’s to take on over the winter months. Workfare exploiters should be looking over their shoulders!