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SCORES of London Labour activists united at the weekend to launch a new anti-fascist campaign.
Labour Against Racism and Fascism (Laraf) held its first election at the Christian Street Community Centre, Whitechapel, yesterday.
The organisation was created after many Labour activists in London raised concerns at the lack of a visible Labour presence on marches against far-right activist Tommy Robinson.
Nearly 100 people attended the meeting, including local councillors, members of Labour’s community organising unit, prominent Momentum figures and London Assembly member Unmesh Desai.
As well as electing a leadership, the meeting discussed potential campaigns for opposing structural racism and inequality on Labour councils.
Campaigners offered ideas to pressure Labour councils to take swifter action to address the race pay gap and to stop awarding work contracts to companies such as G4S, which is involved in the deportation of refugees.
Laraf joint secretary Artin Giles said: “Laraf’s task is well set out for us.
“The truth is that while we have been rebuilding Labour as a mass movement, many of us feel like we haven’t adequately mobilised against the far right, who have seen opportunities to grow out of the anger that exists in our country.
“We must fight this backlash with a positive political alternative, but we have to tackle the far right head on — whether that be on the estates, in the streets, on our football terraces, or in music venues.
“I was thrilled by the enthusiasm in this meeting, but we have to up our game and get on with building a living, breathing anti-racist movement.”
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