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Anti-cuts demo plans for Brighton conferences
Anti-cuts protesters are aiming to mark the political conference season with demonstrations in Brighton.
Union members are lobbying for national strikes when the Trades Union Congress meets at the Brighton Centre on Sunday.
And marches, pickets and occupations are being planned for the Liberal Democrat party conference later this month.
Sussex Police says it is aware of those protests and says officers are speaking to organisers.
The Liberal Democrats are being targeted because of their role in the coalition Government alongside the Conservatives.
Brighton Stop the Cuts Coalition is holding a march on Saturday, September 22 – the first day of the party’s conference.
Alongside that event, Brighton Benefits Campaign, Brighton Solidarity Federation and Brighton Uncut are protesting against workfare, a controversial Government scheme in which people on benefits work without pay.
A Facebook page set up to promote the event reads: “We are aiming to use a diversity of tactics on the day – from static or roving pickets outside shops, to UK Uncut style occupations, to whatever anyone else fancies getting up to.
"We will distribute a list of workfare targets and their locations – when the march ends we will head into town and try to shut down as many of them as we can for as long as we can.”
Recently, anti-workfare campaigns have targeted Holland and Barrett and Poundland.
Brian Stone, chairman of Brighton and Hove Liberal Democrats, said: “I believe the people who are protesting against workfare are shooting themselves in the foot because this is an effective way to get young people into work.
“It is good and right that people have the freedom to express their views. But they would be crossing the line if they occupy shops and stop young people gaining valuable work experience.”
Sussex Police said only: “We are aware of this planned protest and are engaging with the group.”
On Sunday, the National Shop Stewards Network is marching to lobby the TUC to call a general strike against government austerity. The protesters will meet at 1.30pm at The Level and march to the Hilton Metropole Hotel.
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