Arise - a major new Labour Left event

A number of groups, publications, campaigns and prominent figures have come together to organise ‘Arise – A Festival of Labour’s Left Ideas’ on July 27 and 28. Matt Willgress explains why.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd recently resigned, but her agenda didn’t go anywhere. The architect of the entire ‘hostile environment’ policy is still Prime Minister, years after her notorious ‘Go Home’ vans.

We shouldn’t be fooled by this reshuffle and the tactical retreats since, the government remains committed to its failed scapegoating agenda, aiming to distract from the growing cost of living crisis.

What is different though in this situation –as opposed to only a few years ago – is Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour’s clear commitment to ending the ‘hostile environment.’

And just as this reactionary policy on immigration is here to stay as long as the Tories are, so is austerity.

Not only has austerity economically failed, but each week sees more reports of the devastating human impact.

We have had the worst ever NHS winter crisis. Poverty and inequality are spiralling. The housing crisis is deepening.

But, again in this area, the Tories aren’t getting a free pass in terms of implementing their ideologically-driven cuts. Labour has firmly become an anti-austerity party in recent years.

And then of course with Trump’s visit here confirmed, we can also be sure the Tories will carry on outsourcing foreign policy to the White House, as they did with the recent Syria bombing.

Again though under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, despite the pro-bombing Syria stance of a minority of MPs, Labour’s stance was clear, and it has been Labour figures (including Scottish leader Richard Leonard) speaking up against the Trump visit.

Yet whilst Labour’s position has transformed in a range of areas, members have a real thirst to develop Labour’s alternative and deepen understanding of it.

For this reason, a number of groups, publications (including Labour Briefing), campaigns and prominent figures have come together to organise ‘Arise – A Festival of Labour’s Left Ideas’ on July 27 and 28.

Discussions will range from explaining Corbynomics, to how we end the ‘hostile environment,’ to why we need an anti-war Government and much more besides, including book launches, film showings, and a major #JC4PM rally.

I hope you will join us there.

  • Participants include John McDonnell MP, Diane Abbott MP, Richard Burgon MP, Shami Chakrabarti, Lucy Anderson MEP, Chris Williamson MP, Steve Turner of Unite the Union and representatives of a range of campaigning groups including Stand Up to Trump, the Stop the War Coalition, Jewish Voice for Labour, and Lesbian and Gay Support the Miners.
  • You can book advance, discounted ticket for Arise on July 27 / 28 at . You can follow Arise: A Festival of Labour’s Left Ideas on Twitter via @arise_festival and on Facebook at

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