'Where's Ed?' ask Christian Socialists over Occupy protests

'Where's Ed?' ask Christian Socialists over Occupy protests

By staff writers
1 Nov 2011

In a political intervention to the unfolding situation around the Occupy London protests outside St Paul's Cathedral, the Christian Socialist Movement (CSM) has urged the Labour leader Ed Miliband to break his silence.

In a statement today CSM, which is affiliated to the Labour party, said that politicians should be part of the debate around the issues the protestors are raising.

Boris Johnson, Ken Livingstone and David Cameron have made their feelings known regarding the protests. Green party mayoral candidate Jenny Jones has visited the protests. Ed Miliband has faced accusations that he has snubbed protestors.

"We may not always agree but church and politicians should be part of the debate" the statement from CSM said.

"Most of the questions the protesters ask can be heard around the country. They are about the role of banks in the economy and squeezed living standards in contrast to 'business as usual' in some parts of the financial sector" the statement continues.

CSM director Andy Flannagan said: "We don't have to sign up to the protesters complete agenda to engage with what they are talking about. Church and politicians need to get back into this debate about morality in markets."

Singling out the example of the previous Labour leader Gordon Brown, the statement continued: "After the financial crisis struck there was a widespread debate about values. Prime Minister Gordon Brown spoke in St Paul's Cathedral about it in 2009 when the G20 nations met in London, and Archbishop Rowan Williams has spoken about morality in markets.

"However, with the banks bailed out, the moment seemed to have passed. CSM, which has campaigned for years for higher risk banking to be separate from retail banking, believes there is a new opportunity to talk about the kind of economy we want to see."

[Ekk/2]

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