Register now! See the national UAF website for more detail
Unite Against Fascism is holding its annual national conference on Saturday 13 February at the TUC Congress Centre in central London.
This will be a crucial event for everyone who opposes the fascist British National Party and wants to prevent it from making gains at the next General and local elections. It will also be a focus for all those resisting the rise of racist anti-Muslim groups such as the English Defence League.
The election of two members of the fascist British National Party to the European parliament in 2009 threatens to normalise the presence of the BNP in politics. The fascists will attempt to use their foothold to push their bigotry in the media and whip up race hatred on our streets, as we have seen with Nick Griffin's appearance on Question Time. They will also try to use their European gains as a springboard for this year's local elections and general election. Nick Griffin has recently announced that he is to stand in Barking, East London, where they already have 12 councillors and there is a threat they could take countrol of the council if they gain more seats in these local elections.
We have also seen an upsurge in racist demonstrations organised by right wing football hooligans with links to the BNP. These have been targetted at the Muslim community, and in many ways are a product of the BNP's electoral gains. This anti-Muslim racism should also be seen in the wider context. The worrying results from the Swiss referendum on the banning of minarets shows how quickly forms of racism can develop into wider commonsense opinion when not challenged.
Unite Against Fascism has played a leading role in challenging the BNP's attempt to make progress on the back of its breakthrough in the European elections. We have continued to oppose the racism that has fed the growth of the BNP and to explain why appeasing the BNP will only serve to strengthen it. UAF groups around the country have also played a major role in celebrating and defending our multicultural towns and cities in the face of the racist English Defence League's [EDL] attempt to use Islamophobia to provoke conflict and division.
The conference will bring together all those who oppose fascism, including trade unions, Muslim, Jewish, Christian and other faiths, black, Asian, lesbian, gay and disabled communities, enabling us to come together to discuss strategies that have been successful in defeating fascism and to organise activity across the country to stop the BNP in these elections. The event will also be an organising conference for the Love Music Hate Racism Carnivals taking place in key areas across the country.
The next six months will be vital for turning the tide against the fascists. Time is still on our side - the fascists are not yet established as they are in countries like France, Austria and Italy. We must do all we can to alert communities to the BNP threat and mobilise the vote against them.
Register now! Fees are £25 for organisation delegates, £10 for individuals, or £5 for unwaged/students. Make cheques payable to Unite Against Fascism, or use our secure online donation facility at www.tinyurl/UAFdonate and write "Conference Registration" in the comment box. Please include your name, address, email and phone number. Cheques should be sent to UAF, PO Box 36871, London WC1X 9XT.
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