A UNION for the unemployed has been launched in Salford - 80 years after the Battle of Bexley Square when police and jobless clashed.The decision comes as new figures show a 75 per cent rise in the number of people out of work in the city in 12 months.In October, 1931 police baton-charged a large demonstration of unemployed people outside Salford town hall - now the magistrates' court. The incident featured in the classic film Love on the Dole.Organisations for jobless workers were common in the 1930s when unemployment reached record levels.Now the Salford Unemployed and Community Resource Centre has set up a modern Unemployed Workers Movement, with its first meeting yesterday.Centre manager Alec McFadden said: "With so many people out of work and unemployment rising weekly, the need for a union for people without jobs is obvious."Employers are simply taking the easy route and sacking workers, while the government puts billions into the rescue of banks. Nobody is standing up for the unemployed
The Campaign :
"The idea of the union is to create a voice and representation for unemployed people, and campaign for free training and jobs at a proper rate of pay."Nobody in modern Britain either speaks or represents the unemployed or their families."In July, 7,321 people in Salford were claiming Jobseekers Allowance - 5.2 per cent of the city's workforce. The official unemployment figures show that 2.44m are out of work in Britain - the highest in 15 years.Mr McFadden said: "Jobseekers Allowance is £64.30 per week, which is clearly not enough for a person to live on. "This situation will only get worse unless more focused government action is taken."The government could nationalise some workplaces and increase training and apprenticeship schemes."