Danny, a member from Liverpool, writes on his experience of getting involved with Red Fightback.
North London branch distributed fliers today with their demand for public toilets. This post is the online mirror of that text. - Editor
OUR DEMAND: Red Fightback’s North London branch demands the widespread provision of free, gender-neutral, universally accessible toilets, access to which is not policed, charged or gated, within the Seven Sisters neighbourhood.
Our branch commits to continue struggling against the council until this demand is met.
Why this matters:
- Public work requires widespread free public toilets: delivery workers, couriers, public transit drivers and anyone else whose day takes them across the city cannot work without them, or unsafe practises such as intentional dehydration.
- A lack of accessible public toilets places a fundamental barrier on disabled public life: 40% of people with relevant health conditions are trapped in or near their homes by this “urinary leash”.
- Gendered toilets inherently fail to provide the necessary facilities for non-binary people, and the policing of this binary is a common venue for the abuse of trans and non-binary people.
- More broadly Red Fightback understands that the matter of public toilet access cuts across many oppressed peoples' struggles for liberation. For an in-depth explanation of our understanding of this matter, please see the forthcoming article “On the Toilet” on the Red Fightback website.
- We need a clear and specific commitment from the council to meet this demand.
- We won't go, until we can go: This issue won't go away – we will make it as pressing for councillors as it already is for the many people whose lives are impacted by the lack of toilets today.
- You can join this struggle by talking to us at the Branch stall on the High Street, any Saturday between 1 and 3pm.
Who we are:
- Red Fightback’s North London Branch is a group of organisers who have been operating a weekly stall outside of the Seven Sisters market for over a year, as well as contributing to the effort to protect the market and the neighbourhood through participating in the ward’s corner campaign coalition
- As part of our stall, we have provided hot meals and beverages to the Seven Sisters community and engaged in numerous conversations about the state of the market and the anti-gentrification efforts occurring locally. Through these conversations we have inevitably been presented with the basic question, “Where is the nearest toilet?”
- (We are also people who need toilet access, and have frequently struggled to find toilets while on the stall)
- In organising amongst people who have lived in the neighbourhood for decades or even generations, we have learned of all of the former public toilets which have been removed from the area. Whether demolished to make way for Grainger’s gentrification blocks, shut away inside of the currently closed market, or turned into pubs and otherwise converted into private spaces, toilets have been stripped away from the public landscape.
- More generally, Red Fightback is a revolutionary Marxist-Leninist party dedicated to the advancement of class struggle in Britain.