People’s Economy Conference, Central Hall, Manchester, Thursday, January 21st

Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell MP, will join with Green Party MEP, Molly Scott Cato, Fire Brigades Union leader, Matt Wrack, PCS Deputy General Secretary, Chris Baugh, Co-ops UK’s Ed Mayo and financial writer, Frances Coppola, at the open conference.

They will debate the new Labour leader’s controversial proposals for the public sector to be run on democratic co-operative lines rather than by government bureaucrats or private profit.

Focusing on the issue of the railways, in July, Corbyn told Co-operative News “I want the railways back in public ownership. But public control should mean just that, not simply state control: so we should have passengers, rail workers and government too, co-operatively running the railways to ensure they are run in our interests and not for private profit.”

However, given the catastrophic recent crises at the Co-operative Bank and Group, which led to the Bank and parts of the Group being sold to the private sector, there is a huge question mark as to whether a co-operatively run nationalised industry could avoid the bureaucratic mismanagement that so undermined Britain’s flagship co-op and many of the nationalised industries.

Conference organisers, Co-operative Business Consultants, aim to provide a catalyst by bringing together the key stakeholders, workers, co-operators and politicians, to shape the alternative to austerity policies and bring forward solutions that will dominate economic discussion for the foreseeable future.

Workshops will hear speakers ranging from co-ops FC United and Suma to union leaders from the RMT, Unison and NUT and will debate various topics including Workers Control and Management, Railway Renationalisation, Co-ops in the Global Economy and Co-ops in the Public Sector.

The “Building An Economy To Serve People And Not Profit” conference will take place in Manchester on

Thursday 21st January (10am-4pm) in the Central Hall.

Admission (including lunch and refreshments) is £45.00

For further details, or contact Karen Birch 079744 50690 or Jo Bird 079700 75704 for information, interviews etc. To apply for media passes, contact 07901 338700

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