Editor's Choice

Responses to the pandemic: equality or insanity?

Agitation for increased funding for mental health services continues, with various research papers highlighting or predicting high levels of stress, anxiety, depression, self-harm and suicide in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Mental health services are in desperate need of resources.

It remains unclear whether this coronavirus pandemic and lockdown restrictions, specifically, really have made a difference to the mental illness pandemic that was already blighting the lives of billions globally long before Covid-19 came into being.

The Labour War

As trade union struggles re-emerge, we need to bring forward the idea of solidarity too. One of the greatest historical lessons in solidarity in the English-speaking world was the 1913-14 “Labour War” in Dublin.

The story is told in the RTE series Strumpet City, part 1 here.

Remembering 1945

75 years ago, on 26 July 1945, Britain’s first-ever majority Labour government took office. David Booth remembers.

My father, Albert, was born in 1897 in Hoxton, east London. His father had never been to school. He worked at the Army and Navy stores making ladies’ shoes. There were six children, two of whom died in infancy – average for the time – the youngest taking their mother with her. So Grandad worked shorter daytime hours and, after the kids were in bed, sorted mail at Mount Pleasant sorting office all night.

Poland: "Expect a fightback"

Andrzej Duda of the radical right Law and Justice party has been re-elected as Poland’s president, defeating the liberal conservative opposition’s candidate Rafał Trzaskowski 51%-49% in the second round.

Ana Oppenheim spoke to Sacha Ismail about the election and struggles in Poland. Ana is a Polish-born socialist who lives in the UK. She is a member of the Labour Party and the Polish left party Razem, an activist in the Labour Campaign for Free Movement and has just been elected to Momentum’s national coordinating group.

A socialist epidemiologist on the pandemic

George Davey Smith, who is Professor of Clinical Epidemiology at Bristol University, talked with Martin Thomas from Solidarity about the pandemic.

So far, and short of a vaccine, we seem to have only ancient measures to control the spread of the pandemic: physical distancing on different levels, and hygiene. Have we learned anything about variants of those measures which may be both effective and sustainable long-term?

Brazil in the pandemic

Brazil is one of the epicentres of the pandemic, surpassing 1.4 million cases and 60 thousand deaths. The pandemic has not plateaued in Brazil, yet the worst affected areas, in terms of numbers of cases, Rio and SĂŁo Paulo, have started reopening commerce, bars and restaurants.

The Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, maintains his position against social distancing measures (which are left to be done by local governments on a much smaller budget), and has recently vetoed policy passed in congress making the use of face-coverings compulsory in shops, schools and churches.

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