16 January 2021 – Online conference: Organising for Zero Covid

2021 must be the year of #ZeroCovid

England’s four-tier system is a failure. Test and Trace is not doing its job. The Westminster government battled to keep schools open against educators and medical experts’ advice, and only the opposition of teaching unions was able to stop it. There is no plan to get us out of this cycle of restrictions. In Scotland too, despite Holyrood steering a different course at times, infection rates are rising rapidly.
 

What’s the alternative?

Zero Covid is the alternative. It’s a strategy to eliminate the virus, which means a working Test and Trace system, financial and material support for people to enable them to isolate, and ensuring all workplaces which are open are certified Covid-Safe. Restrictions on our lives can be lifted once these elements are in place and as new cases drop off to a level which can be managed by public health teams.
 

Find out more at the Organising for Zero Covid conference!

Session 1: Understanding the Pandemic

Discuss the latest developments in the pandemic and responses to it.

10:00 Plenary speakers:

  • Chair: Hilda Palmer (Hazards Campaign for workplace safety)
  • Professor Michael Baker (New Zealand Ministry of Health’s Pandemic Influenza Technical Advisory Group, pc)
  • Professor Susan Michie (Independent SAGE, pc)
  • Hector Wesley (Black Activists Rising Against Cuts)
  • Janet Newsham (Hazards Campaign for workplace safety)
  • Diane Abbott MP

10:55 Breakout groups

Discussion in smaller groups to come up with questions and points to raise in the main group

11:20 Plenary questions and discussion

12:00 Lunch

Between 12:00 – 12:30 we will have a live performance from Sean Taylor

Session 2: Campaigning for Zero Covid

12:45 Plenary speakers:

  • Chair: Dr Emma Runswick (British Medical Association activist, pc)
  • Richard Burgon MP
  • Bella Ruiz Aristizabel (Sage care home striker, United Voices of the World union member)
  • Ann Galpin (Co-Chair, TUC disabled workers committee, pc)
  • Jim Harte (Unite BAE Systems, Clydeside, pc)
  • Helen McFarlane (NHS worker, Scotland)
  • Kevin Courtney (Joint General Secretary, National Education Union)

13:40 Workshops:

A chance to discuss campaigning for a Zero Covid strategy in a variety of areas – setting up campaign groups, planning lobbying, campaign action, getting more people on board etc.

  • Schools (staff, parents and students)
  • Campuses (staff and students)
  • Workplace organising around safety
  • Building a local Zero Covid group
  • Defend Our NHS
  • Poverty, benefit and cuts
  • Scotland
  • Wales
  • Zero Covid in the Labour Party
  • Organising care workers for Zero Covid
  • Housing is health
Please select which workshop you want to attend by clicking the button below

14:30 Close

Speakers marked “pc” are in a personal capacity.

We will be providing live closed captions through Zoom.

A full timetable is available here

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