The Director's thoughts... From a field

I am writing to you from a field in deepest Somerset.

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Conference 2017 Fringe Events

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We are delighted to be running a full programme of events at the annual Labour Party Conference in Brighton this September 24th-27th. As long-standing members will know, our "Fringe" events are anything but, with many of them drawing large numbers of conference attendees as well as many viewers online. Watch out for our Live Feed and reports from Conference this September!

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"Robin Hood Tax" Report Launch Event with the Labour Party

Labour_Rose.pngChristians on the Left supports the introduction of the "Robin Hood Tax" or an FTT (Financial Transaction Tax) and has worked in Partnership with the Robin Hood Tax Campaign for many years.

Today, Tuesday July 18th saw the release of a milestone report in the campaign for an FTT that would benefit the whole of the UK. John McDonnell MP, the Shadow Chancellor was there to introduce Professor Avinash Persaud (author of the report) along with Jonathan Reynolds MP, Shadow City Minister and Chair of Christians on the Left. Daniel May-Miller and Andy Flannagan were also there from CotL to find out and report on what all the excitement was about...

Download and Read the full, easily digestible report here. Surprisingly well written, with depth and detail on how and why the tax will work, yet understandable by almost anyone.

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Abortion: An Adult Conversation?

The issue of abortion and crisis pregnancy more generally has been back in the news in the last few weeks. In the midst of the inflammatory language and virtue signalling from both sides of the debate it is sometimes difficult to have an adult conversation about the issue. This means for many of us, our understanding of such a complex subject is fairly superficial. Christians on the Left is curating the thoughts of some of our members and referencing some hopefully helpful background reading.

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Responding to terror

Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the recent terrorist attacks in London and Manchester, and with their friends and families. Such acts of violence are designed to strike fear in our hearts but instead, as has been so evident, they have the effect of emphasising our common humanity and increasing our resolve.

These have been attacks on our way of life too – on our democracy and tolerance of different views. The General Election has many people of different faiths standing as candidates, across the political spectrum. This is something to be celebrated, and stands in stark contrast to the extremist views of those who have taken lives in the name of faith.

 

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Watching our words and deeds

Statement from Christians on the Left regarding antisemitic, abusive and intolerant behaviour

‘Within European culture, the root of all racism, I think is found in antisemitism. It goes back more than 1000 years in Europe. Within our Christian tradition, there has been century upon century of these terrible, terrible hatreds in which one people, who at the same time have contributed more to our culture as a people than almost any other that one can identify, that one people are also hated more specifically, more violently, more determinedly, more systematically than any other people.’ – Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury 2017

Respect, dignity, tolerance, watching our words and deeds; all things we value highly as Christians on the Left, along with the ability to disagree robustly but well and the ability to speak out against persecution and hatred.

Events over the last few months have shone a spotlight on the worst of how we behave towards one another. The unacceptable antisemitic remarks and racist behaviour displayed in public, over social media and within communities have all shown a need for relational restoration.

As Christians on the Left, we believe that antisemitic, xenophobic, racist and other personal attacks are absolutely unacceptable. 

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Meet Ann Pettifor

Ann Pettifor will be one of the main speakers at the Tawney dialogue this Wednesday. Read on to find out about her and her views.

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Global Week of Action for Tax Justice April 3rd - 9th 2017

And Protest at PricewaterhouseCoopers head office, Villiers St, London, April 5th, 12 – 1 pm

mossack_fonsecaThe Global Alliance for Tax Justice has called a Week of Action for the first week of April, to coincide with the first anniversary of the ‘Panama Papers’. These were the 11 million files from the Panama law firm of Mossack Fonseca, exposed by a whistle-blower and showing how companies and wealthy individuals avoid tax by using offshore centres. This information has been invaluable in exposing the tricks and ruses used to hide from the tax authorities...

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Tax Whistleblower's Appeal Fails

Suspended Jail Sentence and Fines Upheld in Luxembourg

The convictions of the two whistle-blowers who gave the world the ‘Lux-leaks’ stories have been upheld, although their suspended prison sentences have been reduced, writes Christian on the Left David Haslam, who has been following this story.

The appeals of Antoine Deltour and Raphaël Halet resulted in a six-month suspended jail sentence for Deltour, with a 1500 euros fine, and a 1000 euro fine for Halet, his suspended sentence was quashed. The journalist Edouard Perrin was again acquitted.

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My Experience of the Copeland Campaign

Last week, director Andy Flannagan, executive member Heather Staff and volunteer Matthew Judson visited Cumbria to campaign for Gillian Troughton, a Christians on the Left member and the Labour candidate in the forthcoming Copeland by-election. Matthew, a gap year student who had not previously been involved in a political campaign, shares some of his experiences and reflections.

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