Jeremy Corbyn has issued full-bodied support to communities, trade unions and junior doctors embattled by Conservative policies during a May Day rally speech. The Labour leader, who was speaking in Clerkenwell in central London on 1 May, condemned the government for caring more about giving tax breaks to millionaires than it did preserving basic services for the disabled.
"This is a government more interested in tax cuts than anything else," a fired-up Corbyn told a large crowd who cheered him on. "Why have they taken £4m out of the care budget? Why did they try to take £3bn out of the personal independence payments budget for those with disabilities. They are a government that is more interested in tax relief for corporations, and tax relief at the top end of the scale."
He promised to tackle the government's attempts to water down workers' and trade union rights.
"Two things are going to come in 2020: the repeal of the Trade Union Lobbying and Transparency Bill, which has nothing to do with transparency, and everything to do with stopping NGOs and trade unions from speaking up for ordinary people," he vowed. "The second is on trade union legislation itself. We will be establishing a commission called Workplace 2020, which will be looking at the need to change and improve trade union and workers rights, including self-employed workers, to end the scandal of zero hours contracts and a lower wage for younger workers."
Speaking up for junior doctors forced to strike over the imposition of a new contract they believe is unsafe for patients, he said: "They've been on the march to defend our national health service... and it is beyond disgraceful that the secretary of state for health is more interested in privatising 49% of all NHS services than coming to a negotiated agreement with the junior doctors to ensure that they can continue providing the fantastic care and support that they and all others who work in the NHS provide."
He said: "We're here today to defend the national health service free at the point of service as a human right for all."