At Maxine’s launch meeting last Friday (Picture: Phil Turner)

“You deserve better,” was the message that socialist candidate Maxine Bowler sent out at her electric campaign launch on Friday of last week. Maxine told 70 residents and campaigners that she was running against the Labour MP Gill Furniss because she wanted them to have a voice.

Community activist Abdul Shaif vowed, “We’ll make sure that Maxine’s campaign will have a big impact in the area.” Maxine is a Socialist Workers Party member and the issue of Palestine is central to her campaign in Brightside and Hillsborough, Sheffield.

“I can’t stand by and watch the bombardment, the killing, the starving of men, women and children,” she said. Maxine is also standing on a platform that promises to take on the Tory rule of austerity, racism and cronyism.

“The real problem is those with power—they look after their own. “The Tories have given plenty of lucrative contracts to their mates. You deserve better—someone who will put their life and soul in the area.” Dima Alshami echoed the demand for a fresh voice.

She said, “It’s about time we elect politicians that will represent us and our interests.” “Maxine is one of the strongest people I know— she’s an advocate for workers’ rights, she’s an advocate for Palestine. “She’s at every protest every week being the loudest voice for Palestine.”

Residents at the launch blasted the “appalling” voting record of Furniss, who voted against a ceasefire and failed to vote against suspending the arms trade. A sense of fury about how Furniss has ignored the mass movement for Palestine infused the meeting. “Who on earth votes against a ceasefire to stop an ongoing genocide?

Let’s get her out,” said Dima. Musheir El-Farra from Sheffield Palestine Solidarity Campaign told Socialist Worker he was endorsing Maxine because she “has always been fighting on the right side of history”. “There has been a dis[1]integration of services. It’s about time people vote for politicians that will fight for change.”

Hypocrisy about how there’s no money for services but money for war is a key part of Maxine’s manifesto. “There’s always plenty of money for mass destruction,” she said. “But we need more resources so our young people have a chance. “We have substandard housing and black mould is common.”

Maxine’s campaign is planning weekly meetings and mass canvassing up until voters take to the ballot box. Socialists, trade unionists and campaigners across South Yorkshire should get involved in bringing out her message of change and hope.

Here’s who to vote for

Socialist Worker is supporting candidates who campaign for the Palestinians, against racism and austerity and for the rights of the oppressed. Our list includes:

Aftab Nawaz, Walsall and Bloxwich
Andrew Feinstein, Holborn and St Pancras
Claudia Webbe, Leicester East
Emma Dent Coad, Kensington and Bayswater
Faiza Shaheen, Chingford and Woodford Green
Jabu Nala-Hartley, Oxford East
Jeremy Corbyn, Islington North
Kamel Hawwash, Birmingham Selly Oak
Leanne Mohamad, Ilford North
Maxine Bowler, Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough
Michael Lavalette, Preston
Muhammed Ali Islam, Bradford West
Nandita Lal, Tottenham
Sam Gorst, Liverpool Garston
Tanushka Marah, Hove and Portslade

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