The Cost of Living Crisis will dominate the 2020s in the same way that austerity dominated the 2010s. The anti-austerity movement was one of the greatest social movements in British history: in 2011 alone, millions of workers went on strike repeatedly; there was a continuing student and youth revolt; half a million marched in London; there was widespread rioting; Occupy happened; and hundreds of community anti-cuts campaigns formed. Ultimately however, it failed to achieve its aims.
If a mass movement is going to succeed and do better around the Cost of Living, it will need to learn those lessons. This session will explore the history of the anti-austerity movement, discuss the similarities and differences with today, and talk about the lessons of that moment.
John McDonnell is the MP for Hayes and Harlington, and former Shadow Chancellor.
Former president of the UK's largest union UNISON and member of Time For Real Change.
Michael Chessum was a prominent activist in the 2010 student movement and the wider anti-austerity movement. He went on to sit on Momentum's first steering committee following the election of Jeremy Corbyn. His first book - 'This is Only the Beginning: the making of a new left, from anti-austerity to the fall of Corbyn' - will be published on October 6th by Bloombsury