All motions received on the agenda item ‘Political campaigning strategy, goals and priorities’

We have received nine motions on this subject:

A) Labour Party NEC elections
(Lee Rock et al)- download PDF here
B) Political campaigning strategy, goals and priorities
(Rotherham Left Momentum) – download PDF here
C) An action-based strategy for the LLA
(Tim Argument et al)- download PDF here
D) Green New Deal (Lincolnshire LLA)
– download PDF here
E) Campaign against Scottish independence (Glasgow LLA)
– download PDF here
F) Launching outwards (Medway/North Kent LLA) – download PDF here
G) Campaign against IHRA definition of antisemitism – download PDF here
H) Accept the UK is leaving the European Union (Cheltenham LL) – download PDF here
I) Housing (Merseyside LLA) – download PDF here

A) Labour Party National Executive Committee (NEC) Elections

Download in PDF version or Word file. Please also read this background information in Word and PDF.

The LLA agrees to:

1. Hold an election of all LLA signatories for the nine NEC positions reserved for CLPs, and for the one BAME position.

The election to be held electronically using a transferable voting system.

The nine people selected in the CLP section are listed in the order of position they are elected in.

2. Approach the following groups seeking a joint slate:

Labour Representation Committee (LRC)

Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL)

Campaign for Labour Party Democracy (CLPD)

Agree a mechanism to determine a joint slate, e.g. a joint ballot.

Where a joint slate with any or all of the above is agreed, the LLA candidates will be determined according to where they were placed in the internal LLA elections.

3. If none of the other above groups agree to a joint list of candidates with the LLA we ballot LLA signatories between the following four options:

i. Support the CLGA list of candidates;

ii. Support the CLGA list of candidates except for Jon Lansman;

iii. Apply to join the CLGA and take part in their process; and

iv. Stand our own candidate or candidates under the LLA banner.

4. Any LLA member selected to stand for an NEC position is expected to cooperate fully with the EC and/or Organising Group of the LLA in order to promote the LLA and to build the LLA database of potential supporters. LLA will design a GDPR and Data Protection Act-compliant process where Labour members contacted about the NEC elections can opt-in to the LLA database. The data will be retained during and after the NEC elections for the purposes of promoting and building the LLA.

Background: Present decision making process for NEC ‘left’ list

At the moment the Centre Left Grassroots Alliance determines the ‘left/centre’ candidates for the NEC elections (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centre-Left_Grassroots_Alliance).

The CLGA has the agreeing of the NEC slates as its only purpose.

Affiliated groups to the CLGA are:

  • Momentum (aka Lansman)
  • Campaign for Labour Party Democracy (CLPD)
  • Labour Representation Committee (LRC)
  • Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL)
  • Labour Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament
  • Labour Briefing Co-op
  • Left Futures (Lansmans blog)
  • Labour Assembly Against Austerity
  • Red Labour
  • Grassroot Black Left (GBL)

The above groups meet and haggle over the acceptable names for the CLGA slate.

As can be seen above, some of the affiliated groups are real and carry some weight in the Labour Party

  • Momentum has the numbers, the finances, the database, the full time staff etc.
  • The CLPD has a name that is well recognised.
  • The LRC has a small but loyal following.
  • JVL has a well-respected name.
  • The other groups are either hardly known or mere shells.

In very recent times Momentum has attempted to choose the candidates alone, but have had to back down when others have threatened to stand as well.

Submitted by Lee Rock, Philip Adams, Alan Bellchambers, Pam Bromley, Jeff Conibear, Liam Daniel, Dom Crinson, Alan Donovan, David Edwards, Helen Glazier, Angie Graham, Jim Hignett, Diane Jenkinson, Leon Jevons, Lara Johnson, Mike Kennard, Diane Langford, Kay Lawrence, Vicky Leverett, Gill Mccall, Terry Mccormick, Steve McKenzie, Antoinette Mangion, Tony Mercer, Hannah Moynehan, Jill Narin, William Owen, Mel Poole, Phil Pope, Alex Potter, Amanda Reed, Liv Singh, Ken Syme, Karen Wilson, Nev Wright,

B) Political campaigning strategy, goals and priorities

Submitted by Rotherham Left Momentum Motion. Download as PDF here and Word file here.

In line with the purpose and principles of our constitution:

Political Priorities and Goals:

  • Radically improve the democratisation of the Labour Party and trade unions to empower the membership, especially at grassroots level, to grow the membership, increase its activism and improve its effectiveness;
  • Implement open selection (mandatory reselection) in the Labour Party so the membership can democratically assess candidates and select those that will best represent in the Parliamentary Labour Party the socialist interests of local communities and wider society;
  • Re-instate clause 4 part 4 of the Labour Party rule book with its original wording or similar, with a clear commitment to socialism based on the principle of “from each according to their ability to each according to their need”
  • Publicly dismantle the baseless claims of a widespread or institutional problem of antisemitism in the Labour Party, or indeed of a higher prevalence than other parties, using all available evidence and research which disproves it; and also dismantle the illogical accusation that this in any way equates to a refusal to acknowledge or handle seriously any antisemitic incidents.
  • Reverse the Labour Party’s adoption of the examples in the IHRA definition of antisemitism which conflate anti-Zionism or criticism of Israel with antisemitism, and which restrict freedom of speech regarding legitimate concerns and political debate;
  • Reverse the unjust suspensions and expulsions of Labour Party members that were the victims of the witch hunt of left wing and socialist members by unfairly and without adequate evidence being accused of antisemitism or bringing the party into disrepute relating to the matter.
  • Prevent the Board of Deputies of British Jews’ 10 pledges from being incorporated into the Labour Party rule book or procedures, for reasons laid out clearly in the LAW and SLL letter that the LLA signed up to.
  • Maintain a consistent, internationalist policy within the Labour Party (and beyond), condemning unjust wars, imperialist interventions, colonial subjugation, displacement or persecution of any peoples, defending the democratic and national rights of all, protecting refugees and supporting the free movement of people;
  • Play a leading role in the public debate in convincing the electorate of the merits of the Labour Party’s socialist credentials and recent radical manifestos, to elect a socialist Labour government that will reverse austerity and other regressive attacks on the working class and implement a progressive transformation of society, based on the green industrial revolution, creating massive decent employment, building infrastructure, funding public services, creating public banks, with rapid increase in public ownership and democratic control.

Methods:

  • Be organised and active within the Labour Party, trade unions and other political organisations at grassroots level to influence policy and organisation by democratic means
  • Develop networks, alliances, collaboration and contacts throughout the labour movement, particularly with activists and groups with influence in key roles or functions in the Labour Party, trade unions and other organisations.
  • Develop a national network of potential candidates for all influential roles such as leaders, general secretaries and deputies, MPs, representatives on the NEC, NCC, and CAC, CLP and BLP executives, Labour councillors, TULOs, shop stewards, etc.
  • Provide independent, democratically determined, public political support and criticism to persons in key leadership positions in the Labour Party, trade unions and beyond;
  • Robustly and publicly resist political attacks against the socialist membership of the Labour Party, including against elected representatives and especially the leader, inflicted by the right of the Labour Party, the mainstream media, or indeed any other political opponents.

C) An action-based strategy for LLA

Submitted by Tim Argument et al

Download as a Word file here and PDF file here.

Conference believes that:

  • the LLA objectives set out a clear framework for creating a fairer and more democratic Labour Party more capable of pursuing a socialist programme, if it’s members wish this.
  • the Labour Party needs democratic reform before it can be capable of securing and MAINTAINING social justice in the wider society.
  • to achieve this ALL members of the Party should be treated equally and fairly and be fully accountable to the membership as a whole. Beyond obvious long running issues like MPs reselection this must include all members (MPs included) being subject to a fair and impartial Complaints Process.

Conference notes that many of the issues facing the LLA are historic and have not been resolved despite the efforts of preceding groups.

Conference believes that

  • in order to tackle these the LLA must be more than just another forum for righteous indignation.
  • a failure or inability to produce an action-based strategy will indicate that we can be no more successful than our predecessors.

Conference proposes that the LLA

  • must remain focused on INTERNAL Party reform 
  • should secure a fair and impartial Complaints Process and the role of Labour Complaints, the NEC and Regional Offices in failing to deliver this to date should be fully investigated.
  • should produce a measurable, action based strategy that clearly sets out what we need to do by when, in order to secure all the levers of power within the Party for its members. ‘

Supported by:
Tim Argument, Eric Barnes, Sheila Argument, Andy Coles, Angela Duerden, Denise Addison, Pat Campbell, Siobhan Pearce, Susan Fairweather, Alison Herrington, Jill Navin, Jenny Almedia.

D) Green New Deal

Motion to LLA Conference from Lincolnshire Labour Left Alliance – download in PDF here and Word here.

Adoption of the principles of the Green New Deal as a central part of our organising and campaigning

 Conference notes we are already witnessing the devastating impacts of climate breakdown, alongside the rise of a hard-right nationalism drenched in rampant inequality.

Conference believes that the Labour Left Alliance should campaign to usher in a Green New Deal that revitalises our social and economic bonds – breathing life and energy to ambitious visions of our collective liberation and global solidarity. The Green New Deal can be the winning vision which takes Labour back to power.

Therefore, we commit to the following ten objectives:

1) Building a grassroots movement with climate justice at its heart

2) Bringing the Green New Deal to every town and village in partnership with grassroots community activists and organisers, workers, councillors, and Mayors

3) Campaigning for green jobs and working with trade unions to foster a just transition

4) Promoting public ownership across water, rail, mail, energy (including supply), public transport and broadband

5) Campaigning for Rapid decarbonisation that ensures those most responsible make the greatest changes and pay the greatest price

6) Campaigning for Internationalism that recognises Britain’s unique responsibility and capacity to support mitigation, adaptation and loss and damage action and support globally

7) Support for migrants who are displaced for a confluence of factors, increasingly including climate change

8) Campaign for universal services (across education, housing, health, social care, childcare, youth services, emergency services and more)

9) Campaign for Ecological restoration which repairs losses in ocean and biodiversity, promotes reforestation, and supports a just transition in land use through supporting farmers and local communities to move towards sustainable organic agroecology

10) Communicating the Green New Deal to a variety of audiences

E) Campaign against Scottish independence

Submitted by Glasgow LLA – download PDF here and Word file here

The decline of capitalism as a system produces the tendency for the system to disintegrate. The danger of the current situation is the campaign for independence for Scotland – this would be a disaster for the working class in Scotland. The resulting split in the British working class would weaken the workers movement and the left on both sides of the border. Nationalism and division would be promoted by the doubtless very fractious negotiations surrounding the independence process.

The SNP’s own Growth Commission and one of its former MPs George Kerevan both pointed out that any independent Scotland would have to implement a savage austerity regime for at least some years after independence – in essence the working class will pay with a substantial and probably permanent reduction in living standards.

There is, however, a straightforward matter of democracy – the Scottish Parliament should be able to call a referendum on independence without a Westminster veto.

Therefore the LLA will campaign against Scottish independence and work towards a socialist campaign for the unity of the British working class.

F) Launching outwards

Submitted by Medway/North Kent LLA – download PDF here and Word here

After conference the LLA and all associated groups have to launch outwards. To help achieve that we need to have materials, training, briefings so that affiliated groups can organise campaigns, public meetings, recruit.

In order to recruit and influence within the Labour movement and Union movement, we need a clear LLA strategy.

To be able implement the strategy the practical points for the development of our political level outward facing approach are:

*LLA to provide educational materials for distribution; materials could be printed matter, social media bulletins, emails, YouTube videos

*LLA to provide educational workshops; these could be held in person, via webinars or via videos

*LLA to provide campaign materials so that affiliated groups can run co-ordinated campaigns across the organisation 

*LLA to provide a co-ordinated steer & strategy for influencing the Labour movement and Union movement (this is a big subject dealt with in other motions) but does clarify the LLA’s method and role.

This is a ‘starter’ and not an exclusive list.

There will be many talents, ideas and materials across various local and national groups. The role of the LLA is to harness and co-ordinate these initiatives in line with a common, principled socialist strategy so they have the widest possible effect.

G) Campaign against IHRA definition on antisemitism

Submitted by Leicester Labour Left – download PDF here and Word here

The Labour Left Alliance opposes all forms of racism including antisemitism (ie. hatred of and/or discrimination against Jewish people, for the sole reason of their being Jewish).

LLA notes the adoption in 2018 by the Labour Party of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism, together with its accompanying examples.

LLA further notes that the definition has been widely criticised including by Jewish individuals and organisations. According to the originator of the definition, US attorney Kenneth S. Stern, it had never been intended that it be used as a legal or regulatory device to curb academic or political free speech.

LLA believes that the definition, and more precisely the examples attached to the definition, conflate anti-semitism with criticism of Israel and thus have the potential for limiting legitimate debate and freedom of expression on the nature and actions of the Israeli state.

LLA asserts that the adoption of the IHRA definition by the Labour Party is not useful in either combatting anti-semitism or in enabling free and open discussion on issues concerning the situation in the Middle East, including Israel.

For these reasons, we believe it is important for CLPs to call on the Labour Party Conference to withdraw its support for the IHRA definition and its accompanying examples with immediate effect and to submit motions to conference similar to this.

H) Motion for Labour Left Alliance to accept the UK is leaving the European Union

Submitted by Cheltenham Labour Left – download in Word and PDF format

This conference notes:

  • a high majority of Labour marginal seats voted leave in the 2016 EU referendum compared to a few Labour marginal seats that voted remain.
  • the 2017 general election Labour manifesto committed to respect the outcome of the 2016 EU referendum which resulted in a net gain of 30 seats in the subsequent general election.
  • in the 2019 general election of the 60 seats Labour lost, six were lost to the SNP. Of the 54 seats lost in the rest of the UK, 52 of them voted to leave in 2016 (including many Labour have held for generations, including Blyth Valley, Leigh, Rother Valley, Bassetlaw, Bolsover, Ashfield, Don Valley, Sedgefield, West Bromwich [East and West], Bishop Auckland, Stoke-on-Trent [Central and North], Wakefield and Wrexham): Two voted to remain – Stroud and Kensington which were both unexpected victories in 2017 along with Canterbury (which also voted remain) which we retained.
  • that we have a first-past-the-post voting system therefore elections are won and lost based on swing votes in Labour-Conservative marginals, not winning or losing votes in safe seats.

    We believe that a future Labour government could outside the European Union:
  • fully renationalise mail, rail and utilities under the monopoly of state without the restrictions of competition law.
  • use public spending to provide for our national investment bank and regeneration of ex-industrial and provincial towns without the restrictions on state aid.
  • develop science, technology and green industries.

    This conference resolves:
  • that Labour Left Alliance accepts the UK is leaving the European Union.
  • to build a socialist vision of the UK outside of the European Union.

I) Housing

submitted by Merseyside Labour Left Alliance – download PDF here and Word document here.

We recognize that Labour Councils across the country have been disproportionately disadvantaged under Tory policies of austerity. For example, Liverpool City Council has lost 64% of its local authority budget. Tory cuts to local government have forced Labour Councils to choose where cuts are to be made and will inevitably mean robbing Peter to pay Paul.

Conference reaffirms our total support for the Labour Party manifesto 2019.We congratulate the Labour leadership and believe that the policies we campaigned for were the right policies and would have transformed the lives of millions.

We are particularly concerned at the increasing numbers of homeless people and the number of repossessions of homes, forcing families with young children into bed and breakfast accommodation. The numbers of children pushed into poverty under the Tories has increased year on year and the inability to deal with the housing crisis means this situation will worsen in the next five years.

We recognize the basic right of everyone to have a secure permanent home and believe that a massive house building programme, which was part of the Labour Party Manifesto, is the starting point. We call upon Labour Councils across the country to work together to organize a planned fight back against Tory austerity policies and to draw up a plan of action to establish a National Housing Plan based on building Real Council Houses to rent.

We recognize the need for a National Campaign on this issue and call upon LLA groups across the UK to demand that local councils campaign to end homelessness and commit to taking the message to local people through public meetings, campaigns and publicity in the localities such as local radio and newspapers.

Agendas for LLA pre-conference events could contain:

  1. Agreeing a chair and welcome
  2. Deciding on minute taker
  3. A political opening, perhaps on leadership elections, followed by a short debate
  4. Where a new group is being set up:       
    1.  discussion of what kind of (leadership) structures and officers are needed (plus any campaigns to get involved in)
    1.  affiliation to LLA
    1. if successful: electing a representative to the LLA organising committee
    1. how will affiliation payment to LLA be made (currently £10 for local groups)
  5. LLA conference
    1. motions and amendments for conference (everything will be published here, as and when it is received: https://labourleft.org/lla-launch-conference/)
    1. election of delegates (only LLA signatories can be elected, ratio of 1 delegate per 3 LLA signatories in the area)
  6. Summing up and deciding who will inform LLA OG of outcome of meeting, names of delegates etc.

URGENT ACTION! Help to get Richard Burgon onto the ballot paper!

Please get in touch with your local Labour MP, urging them to give their nomination to Richard Burgon for the position of deputy leader of the Labour Party. Regardless of which candidate you are thinking of voting for, it is important for the left that Richard Burgon is at least on the ballot paper – this will help shape the discussions over the next couple of months about the future direction of the party. Of course, you can also email other Labour MPs. All MPs’ contact details can be found here.

Example letter/email:

Dear [MP]I am emailing you as a matter of some importance, in that I would like you to nominate Richard Burgon for the Deputy Leader.

I am, like many other grassroots members, concerned that Richard might not get sufficient nominations to be on the ballot paper.

I hope you would agree that it important for the democracy of our party that Richard, with the support he has at grassroots level, is at least on the ballot paper to ensure the widest choice as possible.

I look forward to a positive reply.

Solidarity,

Signed

All motions received on the subject ‘Our structures/constitution’

We have received four full draft constitutions, plus a shorter text – they are sorted by date of receipt. The full text is below.

To allow a clear and well-informed debate at conference, the LLA Conference arrangement committee has worked hard to produce a constitutional composite that

a) draws out what we believe are the common ideas in all four drafts, while

b) presenting the main differences as clearly distinct ‘Options’ that conference can vote on.

Click here to read the CAC’s procedural motion which will be taken first in the discussion on ‘Our Structures/constitution’ – if it is agreed, all four original draft constitutions will be superseded and we will continue to discuss the details of the CAC draft composite. If a majority votes against the CAC motion, we will debate the four original draft constitutions featured below.

O) CAC composite draft constitution – download PDF here

A) Labour Against the Witchhunt & Sheffield Labour Left – download PDF here
B) London Labour Left Alliance –
download PDF here
C) Tees Labour Left Alliance –
download PDF here
D) Dulwich LL –
download PDF here
E) Merseyside LLA – download PDF here

O) CAC composite constitution

Download as Word file or PDF document

Note: “Common ground” is that regarded to be reasonably similar or compatible from all four main constitutional drafts submitted by Labour Against the Witchhunt/Sheffield Labour Left, Dulwich Labour Left, Tees Valley Labour Left, and London LLA, and also the smaller motion from Merseyside LLA. It is not possible to be exactly common, so some compromise has been necessary for practicality.

1) Aims

1.1 Common ground:

The Labour Left Alliance was set in July 2019 to bring together groups and individuals on the Labour Left in order to build a democratic, principled and effective alliance that: 

  • organises democratically and transparently;
  • both supports a left leadership against attacks by the right, and is independent and able to criticise our left wing leaders when necessary;
  • opposes racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and all other forms of discrimination and is consistently internationalist, a stance which by definition includes support for the democratic and national rights of the Palestinians;
  • opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism with antisemitism and opposes the witch-hunt against the left;
  • campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Party and the trade unions;
  • campaigns for open selection so that the Parliamentary Labour Party better reflects the views of the vast majority of members;
  • supports and encourages struggles against austerity and all forms of oppression.

Amendment from Rotherham Left Momentum

The constitution should avoid referring to specific strategic aims or tactics that will keep changing, but should instead contain general fixed principles.

Therefore, amend section 1 as follows:

Delete “Aims” and replace with “Principles”

Delete:

  • opposes racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and all other forms of discrimination and is consistently internationalist, a stance which by definition includes support for the democratic and national rights of the Palestinians;
  • opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism with antisemitism and opposes the witch-hunt against the left;
  • campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Party and the trade unions;
  • campaigns for open selection so that the Parliamentary Labour Party better reflects the views of the vast majority of members;

Replace with

  • opposes all forms of persecution and discrimination, including racism and prejudice of all kinds;
  • promotes internationalism, peace, and solidarity, and the democratic rights of all peoples, especially those suffering persecution;
  • is an inclusive organisation that rejects unjust treatment or judgement of people, respecting natural justice and freedom of speech;
  • promotes complete democracy and fully accountable working-class representation within and throughout the Labour Party and trade unions;

Procedural note: Vote for or against

1.2 Differences:

Option A:

The aims in our constitution should be expanded to include other political issues from the following options:

  1. “Free movement of people” [LAW/Sheffield LL]  

Procedural note: Vote for or against

  • “Campaigns for a disciplinary process in the Labour Party which is wholly based on natural justice and due process” [Dulwich LL]

Procedural note: Vote for or against

Option B:

Our aims should also spell out our vision of socialism:

Opposition to capitalism, imperialism, racism, militarism and the ecological degradation of the planet through the ruinous cycle of production for the sake of production.

We envisage a democratically planned economy and moving towards a stateless, classless, moneyless society that embodies the principle “From each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs”.

Commitment to achieving a democratic republic. The standing army, the monarchy, the House of Lords and the state sponsorship of the Church of England must go. We support a single-chamber parliament, proportional representation and annual elections. 

We seek to achieve the full democratisation of the Labour Party. All MPs, MEPs and MSPs should be subject to automatic reselection. All elected Labour Party members should be expected to take no more than the average skilled worker’s wage. The Parliamentary Labour Party should be subordinated to the National Executive Committee.

We seek the replacement of Labour’s existing clause four with a commitment to socialism as the rule of the working class.

We support Labour as the federal party of the working class. All trade unions, cooperatives, socialist societies and leftwing groups and parties should be brought together in the Labour Party.

We shall work with others internationally in pursuit of the aim of replacing capitalism with working class rule and socialism. [London LLA]

Procedural note: Vote for or against

2) Structures

2.1 Common ground:

We encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to organise every single supporter in an active local or regional Labour Left group.

We welcome, on all levels of the organisation, those who have been unfairly or unjustly suspended or expelled from the Labour Party.

Individual supporters are requested to pay a minimum subscription to help secure the funding of LLA. Affiliation fees for individuals and groups to be set by the organising group.

Decisions on all levels are made by consensus where possible and by simple majority where necessary (not counting abstentions). Decisions should be reached as quickly as possible, allowing the discussion to be as thorough as possible. 

LLA branches and affiliated groups are encouraged to communicate and form any collaborative ventures they wish.

We welcome national, regional and local groups, unions and individuals to become signatories of our appeal.

2.2 Difference: Political orientation/eligibility

Option A:

We want to organise within and also beyond the Labour Party to establish a broad-based socialist movement. [Merseyside LL]

Option B:

We expect all individual LLA supporters to be members of the Labour Party, and organisations to be politically oriented towards the Labour Party and actively engage with it. Other political parties and their members/supporters are not eligible to become signatories to the LLA. [LAW/SLL, Tees Valley LL, London LLA]

Option C:
LLA shall be a broad left organisation composed of the those groups and individuals who subscribe to its principles and who are:

a. Bona-fide Constituency Left Labour Party / Momentum groups

b. Labour Party branches or Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs)

c. Broad Left Labour Party organisations

d. Trade unions

e. Labour Party organisations representing special interests or particular groups of members, (eg BAME, Women’s groups, etc)

f. Individual Labour Party members [Dulwich]

Procedural note: They will be taken against each other as they are incompatible, with an additional option of ‘Neither’.

3) Organising group and steering group

3.1 Common ground:

The organising group meets at least quarterly. Meetings should be scheduled well in advance (at least one month). It publishes agendas, minutes, reports and financial overviews and may set up working groups. It discusses all motions and requests made by at least 10 LLA signatories.

The organising group comprises officers who are accountable to the OG. As a minimum, the following officers shall work together as a steering group:

  • Secretary
  • Chair
  • national organizer
  • treasurer
  • social media and website coordinator.

Additional officers that may be included as the organisation grows, to be determined by the OG:

  • Vice-Chair (or two co-chairs)
  • Assistant Secretary
  • Campaigns Officer
  • Trade Union Organiser
  • Membership and Affiliations secretary
  • Media and Communications Officer
  • Information Officer
  • Campaigns Officer
  • National Organiser

Where an officer position cannot be filled, the OG may co-opt a supporter of the LLA to the steering group – they will have speaking, but no voting rights.

The steering group produces regular minutes and work reports for the OG.

If there is a serious disagreement on the SG, the issue should be brought to the OG to be resolved.

The SG is in ‘permanent session’ and will discuss motions or proposals that have been submitted by any affiliate or a suitable number of individual supporters. Should the movers disagree with the decision by the SC, they can submit their proposals to the Organising Group, which will have to discuss it at the earliest opportunity.

3.2 Difference: How is the leadership elected?

Option A        [London LL]

  • An Organising Group is elected at Conference
  • Conference decides on the size and functions of the OG
  • The OG elects its own officers

Option B         [Sheffield LL]

  • The Organising Group is made up of representatives from all the affiliated groups
  • The affiliated groups can change their representative/s at any time
  • The OG elects annually a Steering Committee of a size of its own determination

Option C        [Dulwich LL]

  • The Organising Group is made up of representatives from all the affiliated groups of over 10 members
  • The OG elects an Officers Group with a maximum of 15 members
  • The Officers Group will establish an executive body to oversee conduct and compliance with the constitution

Option D         [Tees Valley LL]

  • A Steering Committee is elected annually by OMOV electronic ballot
  • There shall be a non-executive Constitutional Committee to provide effective oversight to ensure compliance throughout the organization with the LLA Aims and Constitution
  • The Constitutional Committee shall comprise one representative from each region (elected by OMOV in that region) and one representative directly appointed by each of the national affiliates

Option E       [Brighton LLA]

  • The OG shall consist of 8 people elected at conference and one delegate from each affiliated organisation or branch consisting of 10 or more people.
  • Conference should elect a Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer who can be recalled by a 2/3 majority of the Organising Group, which will then elect a replacement until the following AGM.

Procedural note 1: They will be taken against each other as they are incompatible, with an additional option of ‘Neither’.

Procedural note 2: If Option A or E is agreed:

Option 1: Immediate elections shall take place as per the CAC preparations.

Option 2: Call another conference in 6 months time to elect the OG and hear any amendments to the new constitution.

Option 3: Continue with the current OG until the next annual conference.

4) Conference and its composition

4.1 Common ground:

Conference takes place at least annually. A special conference will be held at the request a number individual supporters or affiliated groups or branches (to be decided by the OG).

Conference decides on political strategy, campaigning priorities, structures and the constitution.

The OG decides on a method to allow the full participation of individual members who cannot attend meetings of any affiliated groups.

The OG establishes a Conference Arrangements Committee for the purposes of deciding speakers and the agenda and publishes detailed guidelines and timetables for motions and amendments.

Amendment from Alan Pearson et al:

Add:

“The Conference Arrangements Committee (CAC) shall comply with the following requirements:

  1. CAC may facilitate in the compositing of motions by stakeholders but not submit motions of its own accord
  2. Stakeholders are defined as representatives from the local groups or affiliates that have submitted the motions to be composited
  3. Stakeholders must agree the final wording of the composite and shall agree a mover and a seconder who will speak to conference during the relevant debate
  4. If the stakeholders cannot reach agreement then Conference hears all the individual motions
  5. If a limited number of stakeholders agree a composite then Conference hears that composite plus the remaining individual motions
  6. CAC may submit procedural motions to facilitate the effective functioning of Conference subject to approval by the Organising Group  
  7. Members of the CAC are ex-officio at Conference without voting rights unless they are delegates from a local group or affiliate”

Procedural note: Vote for or against

4.2 Difference: How are delegate numbers determined

Option A:

The OG decides on a number or ratio of delegates from affiliated organisations.

[LAW/SLL, Tees Valley LL, London LLA]

Option B:

Group/organisation delegate numbers are determined as follows: 

  • between 10 and 100 members – two delegates 
  • between 100 and 500 members – three delegates
  • between 500 and 2000 members – four delegates
  • over 2000 members – five delegates
  • Unions may affiliate at branch, regional or national level, but they may not have delegates from branches within regions where their Region itself is affiliated. Affiliated trade union national offices are entitled to one delegate.  [Dulwich LL]

Procedural note: They will be taken against each other as they are incompatible, with an additional option of ‘Neither’.

4.3 Difference: Voting at LLA conference

Option A: [Dulwich]

Motions must be passed by both

– a majority of individual members and

– a majority of affiliated groups

Where a motion fails to obtain majority support by both a. and b. above, but achieves a majority of one of them, then the motion will be referred to the Organising Group.

Option B:  [London, Sheffield, Tees Valley]

All decisions are made by a simple majority of those voting.

Procedural note: They will be taken against each other as they are incompatible.

A) Labour against the Witchhunt & Sheffield Labour Left

-> please send comments and proposed changes to info@labouragainstthewitchhunt.org (last update: January 31 2020). PDF version available here, Word file here.

Labour Left Alliance – our rules

  1. Our aims
  2. Individual supporters
  3. The Organising Group
  4. The Steering Committee
  5. LLA conference

1. Our aims

The Labour Left Alliance was set in July 2019 to bring together groups and individuals on the Labour Left in order to build a democratic, principled and effective alliance that: 

  • organises democratically and transparently;
  • both supports a left leadership against attacks by the right, and is independent and able to criticise our left wing leaders when necessary;
  • opposes racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and all other forms of discrimination and is consistently internationalist, a stance which by definition includes support for the democratic and national rights of the Palestinians;
  • opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism with antisemitism and opposes the witch-hunt against Jeremy Corbyn and the left;
  • campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Party and the trade unions;
  • campaigns for open selection so that the Parliamentary Labour Party better reflects the views of the vast majority of members;
  • supports and encourages struggles now against austerity and all forms of oppression;
  • supports the free movement of people.

We believe in the free and open exchange of ideas and viewpoints. But once LLA has agreed a particular action, a campaign, a leaflet etc. we ask that supporters do not sabotage or undermine it.

2. Individual supporters

We expect all LLA supporters to be members of the Labour Party and encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to organise every single supporter in an active local or regional Labour Left group. We also welcome, on all levels of the organisation, those who have been suspended or expelled as part of the witch-hunt against the left and Jeremy Corbyn.

Individual supporters are requested to pay a minimum of £10/year to help secure the funding of LLA.

3. The Organising Group

The OG is made up of representatives from all the groups whose affiliation to the LLA has been accepted by the OG. It is up to local and national groups to decide how their representatives are chosen or if and when they should be replaced.

  • All national trade unions can appoint up to three representatives once they have paid the affiliation fee of £500/annum.
  • Any local or regional trade union or Labour Party body can appoint one representative once they have paid the affiliation fee of £100/annum.
  • Every broad left national organisation or organisation representing special interests or particular groups of members with over 200 members can appoint up to two representatives once it has paid the affiliation fee of £200/annum.
  • Every broad left national organisation or organisation representing special interests or groups of members with under 200 members can appoint one representative once it has paid the affiliation fee of £100/annum.
  • Every bona fide local group (including Momentum groups) with a minimum of 10 signed up LLA supporters can appoint one representative once it has paid the affiliation fee of £20/annum.

All representatives on the Organising Group have to be signed up supporters of the Labour Left Alliance.

Groups/organisations/trade unions that are affiliated nationally may also affiliate their regional or local branches, but these cannot send representatives to the OG to avoid duplication and overrepresentation.

The OG should meet at least quarterly, in a face-to-face or an online meeting. It can also make decisions via email or other agreed communication channels by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe. It produces regular minutes/reports to LLA supporters. If possible, meetings should be scheduled well in advance (at least one month).

All decisions at all levels are made by a simple majority of those voting (excluding abstentions).

The OG can set up working groups and sub-committees on any particular subject. These work closely with the relevant officer on the SC.

4. The Steering Committee

The Organising Group, at its first meeting after conference and then annually, elects a Steering Committee of the size of its own determination and in order to fill at least the following positions, which have the following responsibilities:

  • Secretary and assistant secretary: Overseeing the implementation of decisions made by SC and OG; drafting email bulletins and other communications with members; compiling and distributing minutes; assisting the OG in organising its meetings etc.
  • Chair: Prepares agendas and chairs meetings of the SC and, on agreement of the OG, meetings of the OG; assists the secretary with overseeing the implementation of all decisions of the SC and OG, etc
  • National organiser: Main contact for affiliated local and national groups; helps to set up and run new local Labour Left groups etc.
  • Campaigns officer: Pulling together, sharing and publicising local experiences, motions and campaigns; seeing through any LLA campaigns agreed by the SC/OG.
  • Treasurer: self-explanatory.
  • Social media coordinator: Overseeing the social media team; making sure there is a steady flow of content produced for public FB page and Twitter etc.
  • Trade union organiser: Organising LLA supporters in different unions; works to get local, regional and national unions affiliated to the LLA etc.

The OG can elect and recall members of the SC at anytime and by a simple majority. Where a position cannot be filled, the OG can co-opt somebody from outside the OG.

The SC is in ‘permanent session’ and makes decisions via face-to-face meetings, or any other agreed ways of communication. All decisions are made by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe (ideally, between 24 and 72 hours).

The SC produces regular minutes and work reports for the OG. These should be produced at least monthly, but more regular at peak times.

If there is a serious disagreement on the SC, the issue should be brought to the OG to be resolved.

The SC will discuss any motions or proposals that have been submitted by affiliated, bona fide national or local groups and any motions or proposals submitted by a minimum of 25 individual members. This includes motions and proposals on national campaigns and policy. The movers of those proposals will be informed in writing of the outcome of the discussion. Should the movers disagree with the way forward/the decision by the SC, they can submit their proposals to the Organising Group, which will have to discuss it at the earliest opportunity.

Proposals to change or amend the constitution should be directed to the OG, which will decide if the matter can be decided by the OG or if a special conference should be called.

The SC is accountable to the OG, which can overturn decisions made by the SC at anytime.

5. LLA conference

LLA conference meets at least once a year, but the OG or a petition by 10% of individual supporters, can call a special conference at anytime and on any subject.

Conference makes decisions on:

  1. political strategy
  2. campaigning priorities
  3. structures and constitution

The OG establishes a Conference Arrangements Committee for the purposes of deciding speakers and the agenda and to determine whether motions are within the remit of LLA etc.

The OG decides on the ratio for the election of delegates. It will allocate all members to a particular area where a democratic meeting will be held for the purpose of electing conference delegates and deciding on motions and amendments. 

All affiliated local or national groups or any 10 LLA members can submit one motion and one amendment on each separate conference heading.

B) London Labour Left Alliance

-> as PDF document here, as Word document here.

1. Our aims and principles

1.1. The Labour Left Alliance brings together organisations, groups and individuals with a view to pursuing these aims.

1.2. Opposition to capitalism, imperialism, racism, militarism and the ecological degradation of the planet through the ruinous cycle of production for the sake of production or profit.

1.3. The replacement of Labour’s existing clause four with a commitment to socialism as the rule of the working class. We envisage a democratically planned economy and moving towards a stateless, classless, moneyless society that embodies the principle, “From each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs”. Alone such benign conditions create the possibility of every individual fully realising their innate potentialities.

1.4. Towards that end Labour should commit itself to achieving a democratic republic. The standing army, the monarchy, the House of Lords and the state sponsorship of the Church of England must go. We support a single-chamber parliament, proportional representation and annual elections. Labour needs to win the active backing of the majority of people and should seek to form a government only on this basis.

1.5. We seek to achieve the full democratisation of the Labour Party. All MPs, MEPs and MSPs should be subject to automatic reselection. All elected Labour Party members should be expected to take no more than the average skilled worker’s wage. The Parliamentary Labour Party should be subordinated to the National Executive Committee.

1.6. We support Labour as the federal party of the working class. All trade unions, cooperatives, socialist societies and leftwing groups and parties should be brought together in the Labour Party. Unity brings strength.

1.7. We shall work with others internationally in pursuit of the aim of replacing capitalism with working class rule and socialism.

2. Structure

2.1. The Labour Left Alliance is a membership organisation. Members are required to accept our political aims and principles and pay an annual fee (to be set by the Organising Group).

2.2. We believe in the free and open exchange of ideas and viewpoints. But, once the LLA has agreed a particular action, we seek to achieve the maximum unity. That cannot be imposed – it has to be won.

2.3. We expect all LLA members to be in the Labour Party and encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to organise all members in local and regional LLA groups and branches. We also welcome, on all levels of the organisation, those who have been suspended or expelled as part of the witch-hunt against the left.

2.4. LLA conference meets at least once a year. Conference will consist of either individual members or delegates (at a ratio to be decided by the Organising Group). Conference debates aims and principles, agrees political strategy, votes on motions and elects a leadership.

2.5. If 30% of affiliated groups and branches or 30% of individual members so wish, there will be a special conference.

2.6. Affiliated groups, LLA branches or any 10 LLA members can submit one motion and one amendment to conference.

3. Organising Group

3.1. The OG functions as the leadership of the LLA. The OG is elected at conference. Conference decides on the size and functions of the OG.

3.2 The OG elects its own officers on the basis of immediate recallability. The OG can coopt members, given particular needs. While coopted members shall have speaking rights, they will have no voting rights.

3.3. The OG should meet at least quarterly, in a face-to-face or an online meeting. It can also make decisions via email or other agreed communication channels by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe. It produces regular minutes/reports to LLA supporters. If possible, meetings should be scheduled well in advance (at least one month).

3.4. The OG decides on the level of affiliation fees for groups and organisations and needs to approve all requests for affiliation.

3.5. All decisions at all levels are made by a simple majority of those voting (excluding abstentions).

3.6. The OG can set up working groups and sub-committees on any particular subject.

Amendments

1) From London LLA and Stan Keable et al:

In point 1.2. remove the words “or profit”.

Procedural note: Vote for or against

2) From Swansea and West Wales LLA:

Delete point 2.3 and replace with:

“We encourage LLA members to be in the Labour Party so long as that member does not actively campaign, electorally, for a vote against the Labour Party. We encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to enable all members in local and regional LLA groups, branches and affiliated bodies.” 

Procedural note: Vote for or against

 C) Tees Labour Left Alliance

You can download the motion in PDF Format here and read the background notes motivating the constitution here.

  1. Our aims
  2. Individual supporters and basic structure
  3. The Steering Committee
  4. The Constitutional Committee
  5. LLA conference
  6. Disputes
  7. Our aims

The Labour Left Alliance was set up in July 2019 to bring together groups and individuals on the Labour Left in order to build a democratic, principled and effective alliance that:

  • Is organised democratically and transparently
    • Supports a socialist Labour Party leader against attacks by the right, but is independent and able to criticise the leadership when necessary
    • Opposes all forms of racism and discrimination including antisemitism and Islamophobia and is consistently internationalist
    • Opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism with antisemitism
    • Campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Party and the trade unions
    • Campaigns for Open Selection in the Labour Party
    • Supports and encourages struggles against austerity and all forms of oppression

We believe in the free and open exchange of ideas and viewpoints. We do not have ‘party lines’. But once LLA has agreed a particular action, a campaign, a leaflet etc. we ask that supporters do not sabotage or undermine it.

  • Individual supporters and basic structure
    • We expect all LLA supporters to be members of the Labour Party and encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to organise every single supporter in an active local or regional Labour Left group. We also welcome, on all levels of the organisation, those who have been unfairly suspended or expelled from the Labour Party or unfairly refused admittance.
    • Individual supporters are requested to pay a minimum of £10/year to help secure the funding of the LLA.
    • Members of other socialist political parties are not eligible for membership of LLA although along with non-members individuals are able by invitation to attend public meetings, joint campaigns or events.
    • New members sign up to the national LLA Appeal with applications being approved by the local Labour Left Branch. The local branch may also submit to the LLA Steering Committee recommendations for the revocation of membership
    • Local branches shall be based on constituency boundaries or groups of constituencies as the basic unit of LLA.
    • There shall be cooperation between branches where other boundaries, of local authorities for instance, overlap the constituencies
    • Each local Labour Left Branch shall hold an Annual General Meeting to elect as a minimum its Chair, Secretary and Treasurer along with other officer posts as it deems necessary to ensure effective local operation and liaison with the LLA Steering Committee
    • Branches shall be able to communicate directly with their members and supporters without central control.
    • Branches shall be able to form collaborative ventures with other LLA groups, regional or functional
    • Existing local left groups (for example Momentum, Labour Representation Committee) with a minimum of 10 signed up LLA supporters may affiliate as branches to the LLA with an affiliation fee of £20/annum. There shall be discussion with the LLA Steering Committee as to how local individual signatories to the LLA Appeal may participate in the existing local left group  
    • LLA members may form equality groups with individual constitutions as agreed with the Constitutional Committee:
  • Women
  • LGBT
  • BAME
  • Disabled
  • Youth
    • Trade Unions may affiliate to the LLA at national level with the agreement of the Constitutional Committee and with an affiliation fee of £500/annum.
    • Other national broad left groups with over 200 members may affiliate to the LLA at national level with the agreement of the Constitutional Committee and with an affiliation fee of £200/annum
    • All decisions at all levels are made by a simple majority of those voting (excluding abstentions)
  • The Steering Committee

The management of the Labour Left Alliance shall be in the hands of a national Steering Committee

  • All members of the Steering Committee have to be signed up supporters of the Labour Left Alliance
    • There shall be11 members of the Steering Committee plus the following officers (gender balanced):
  • Chair
  • Vice-Chair
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
    • Members and officers of the Steering Committee shall be elected on an bi-annual basis by the membership of LLA by OMOV electronic ballot
    • Nominations onto the ballot are made by the following:
  • each of the English Regions plus Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, International
  • each  of the Equality Groups
  • each of the national affiliates
    • All of the regions, groups and affiliates above are able to make 1 nomination for each of the officer positions and 2 nominations for the other 11 member places
    • Each LLA Branch is able to select candidates as regional nominees on the basis of 1 candidate for each of the officer positions and 2 candidates, gender balanced, for the other 11 member places. Regional nominees shall be selected by OMOV in that region.
    • Selection of nominees by Equality Groups and Affiliates will be by their own processes as agreed with the LLA Constitutional Committee
  • The Steering Committee shall implement a process for the selection of nominees to the NEC and other bodies that is transparent and democratic.
  • The Steering Committee may elect from its own members or (with the approval of the Constitutional Committee) from the LLA membership the following additional officer positions
  • Assistant Secretary
  • National Organiser
  • Campaigns Officer
  • Social Media Coordinator
  • Trade Union Organiser
  • The functions of the Steering Committee shall be as follows:
  • Membership and financial administration
  • Internal communications including regular bulletins and podcasts
  • External communications including national policy statements and media contact when required
  • Campaign organisation
  • Sharing of best practice in terms of local experiences, motions and campaigns
  • Provision of a main contact for affiliated local and national groups
  • Assistance with the establishment and operation of new local Labour Left groups
  • Overseeing a social media team, managing LLA internal forums and making sure there is a steady flow of content produced for a public FB page and Twitter, etc
  • Organising LLA supporters in different unions and working to get national unions affiliated to the LLA
  • The Steering Committee is in ‘permanent session’ and makes decisions via face-to-face meetings, or any other agreed ways of communication. All decisions are made by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe (ideally, between 24 and 72 hours).
  • The LLA Steering Committee shall operate on the basis of transparency, publishing:
  • agendas, minutes, treasurer reports and voting records
  • its internal procedures
  • a structure of the national organisation, including national organisers and administrative roles
  • The LLA Steering Committee is able to form working groups whose proceedings are equally transparent
  • The Steering Committee will discuss any motions or proposals that have been submitted by affiliated, bona fide national or local groups and any motions or proposals submitted by a minimum of 25 individual members. This includes motions and proposals on national campaigns and policy.
  • The Constitutional Committee

The Constitutional Committee provides effective oversight to ensure compliance throughout the organisation with the LLA aims and constitution

  • Members of the Constitutional Committee shall be elected on a bi-annual basis by each of the following (one representative each):
  • the English Regions plus Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, International
  • the Equality Groups
  • the national affiliates
  • Each local Labour Left Branch is able to nominate one Regional candidate. Regional nominees will then be selected by OMOV in that region.
  • Election of representatives by Equality Groups and Affiliates will be by their own processes as agreed with the LLA Constitutional Committee
  • All representatives on the Constitutional Committee have to be signed up supporters of the Labour Left Alliance
  • The Constitutional Committee should meet at least quarterly, in a face-to-face or an online meeting. It can also make decisions via email or other agreed communication channels by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe. It produces regular minutes/reports to LLA supporters. If possible, meetings should be scheduled well in advance (at least one month).
  •  LLA Conference

LLA Conference meets at least once a year, but the Constitutional Committee or a petition by 10% of individual supporters, can call a special conference at any time and on any subject.

Conference makes decisions on:

i) Recruitment, organising and social media.

ii) Our aims and purpose: Political strategy, campaigning priorities.

iii) Our structures and constitution

The Steering Committee establishes a Conference Arrangements Committee for the purposes of deciding speakers and the agenda and to determine whether motions are within the remit of LLA etc. 

The Steering Committee decides on the ratio for the election of delegates. It will allocate all members to a particular area where a democratic meeting will be held for the purpose of electing conference delegates and deciding on motions and amendments.  

All affiliated local or national groups or any 10 LLA members can submit one motion and one amendment on each separate conference heading (but every person can only sign one motion/amendment).

Between conferences:

  • Local Labour Left branches / Equality Groups / Affiliates and groups of a minimum of 25 individual members are able to submit motions on each of the 3 categories listed above.
  • Motions on political strategy and campaigning priorities should be submitted to the Steering Committee
  • Motions on constitutional amendments should be submitted to the Constitutional Committee subject to a limit of one such motion per year from each branch, group and affiliate
  • Dependent on the nature of the motion and its potential impact the Steering Committee may make its own decision as to whether to approve it OR consult with the wider membership OR refer it to the Constitutional Committee 
  • Where the motion is a constitutional amendment the Constitutional Committee will decide whether to refer it to the Steering Committee OR consult with the wider membership OR call a special conference
  • Again dependent on the nature of the motion and its potential impact there may be various means of wider consultation, from simply inviting comments, to on-line polls and up to full membership debate including amendments to the motion.
  • The Steering Committee will be responsible for the establishment and operation of  on-line consultation processes with members that are effective in consulting a broad base without holding back change
  • Where, short of a Special Conference, a full debate is required including amendments motions should approved or not by the votes of each LLA branch weighted according to membership numbers.
  • In all cases the movers of the proposals will be informed in writing of the outcome of the discussion. 
  • Disputes

The Steering Committee is responsible for the resolution of disputes relating to complaints, membership, motions, procedures, elections and ballots

The Constitutional Committee is responsible for the resolution of appeals relating to

  • Steering Committee decisions
  • Serious disagreement within the Steering Committee

The Constitutional Committee has the authority to overturn on appeal decisions by the Steering Committee and its decision on all disputes is final.

D) Dulwich Labour Left

download PDF here and Word file here

LABOUR LEFT ALLIANCE  (LLA)

STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES

The Labour Left Alliance was set in July 2019 to bring together groups and individuals on the Labour Left in order to build a democratic, principled and effective alliance that:

• organises democratically and transparently

•  believes in the free and open exchange of ideas and viewpoints

•  is committed to the transformation of society to serve the interests of the many not the few across the NHS, mental health, housing, education, social care and essential services

•  supports and encourages struggles now against austerity and all forms of oppression

•  both supports the Labour leadership against attacks by the right, and is independent and able to criticise the Labour leadership when appropriate

• opposes racism, antisemitism, Islamophobia and all other forms of discrimination and oppression; and is consistently internationalist, a stance which by definition includes support for the democratic and national rights of the Palestinian people

• opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism and criticism of Israel with antisemitism and opposes all witch hunts against the left

• does not exclude those who have been unjustly suspended or expelled from the Labour Party

• campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Movement

•  campaigns for a disciplinary process in the Labour Party which is wholly based on natural justice and due process

• campaigns for the implementation of mandatory re-selection so that the Parliamentary Labour Party better reflects the views of the vast majority of members

• supports the free movement of people

OBJECTIVES

•  to focus the mass grassroots movement of the Labour Party on wholehearted support for socialist transformative, and anti-austerity policies of the Party

•  to organise every supporter to be active in local or regional Labour Left/Momentum group

 • to encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up

• to work closely and coordinate with the trade union movement at its branch, regional and national levels

• to form alliances with similar broad left Labour Party grassroots groups (e.g. Labour Representation Committee, Jewish Voice for Labour, etc) to build a national grass roots organisation

• to engage in and coordinate practical action at community, constituency and local government levels to fight austerity and to implement the transformative policies in the 2017 and 2019 Labour Party manifestos

• to work alongside other campaigns and community groups outside the Labour Party whose principles and actions we share

ORGANISATIONAL PRINCIPLES AND STRUCTURE

1.0

LLA shall be a broad left organisation composed of the those groups and individuals who subscribe to its principles:

a.         Bona-fide Constituency Left Labour Party / Momentum groups

b.         Labour Party branches

            OR

            Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs)

c.          Broad Left Labour Party organisations

d.         Trade unions

e.         Labour Party organisations representing special interests or particular groups of members

f.          Individual Labour Party members

1.1

LLA  will be based on democratic principles, and on the principles of equality with respect to race, gender, gender identity, ethnicity and differential ability.

1.2

All voting members, whether delegates from paid up affiliated groups or individuals as (f) above, must be individual members of LLA.

1.3

Proxy voting is not permitted.

2.

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING (AGM)

The AGM will determine principle policy, in line with the statement of principles.

2.1

The AGM to be composed of:

i.          Voting delegates from affiliated bona-fide Labour Left/Momentum                                                                      constituency groups,

ii           Voting delegates from affiliated Labour Party Branches

            OR

            Voting delegates from affiliated CLPs

iii.         Voting delegates from affiliated trade unions,

iv.         Voting delegates from affiliated broad left organisations,

v.         Voting members from Labour Party organisations representing special                                                                interests or particular groups of members

vi.         Individual LLA members (as 1.0.f above), one member, one vote.

2.2

Labour Left/Momentum groups must have 10 or more signed-up members to qualify to send delagete(s) to the AGM

2.3

Groups/organisation’s to be represented as follows, those with:

i.          between 10 and 100 members are entitled to TWO delegate vote

ii.          between 100 and 500 members are entitled to THREE delegate votes

iii.         between 500 and 2000 members are entitled to  FOUR delegate votes

iv.         over 2000 members are entitled to FIVE delegate votes

2.4

Unions may affiliate at branch, regional or national level, but they may not have delegates from branches within regions where their Region itself is affiliated.

Affiliated trade union national offices are entitled to ONE delegate.

2.5

Motions to Conference may be submitted by any of the above bodies having at leats TEN members and  having been duly proposed, seconded and adopted by these bodies.

2.6

Motions must be submitted three weeks before Conference date and circulated to all constituent groups at least two weeks before Conference.

2.7

Amendments may be submitted up to 24 hours before the Conference date.

2.8

Emergency motions and amendments may be submitted during Conference at the discretion of the Chair or a vote of the Conference

2.9

i.          Motions must be passed by both

            a.         a majority of individual members

                        and

            b.         a majority of affiliated groups

ii.          Where a motion fails to obtain majority support by both a. and b. above, but achieves a majority of one of them, then the motion will be referred to the Organising Group.

2.10

The AGM may change the LLA Constitution.

Motions to change the constitution must be passed by both

            a.         a majority of individual members

                        and

            b.         a majority of the delegate votes of affiliated groups

2.11

A Conference Organising Committee (COC) shall be set up by the OG to oversee the organisation of Conference, validation of delegates, and to carry out any desirable compositing of motions

2.12

AGM meetings shall be minuted, the minutes distributed/made available to all members/affiliates. These minutes shall be approved, and amended where appropriate, by the first meeting of the OG following the AGM.

3.0

THE ORGANISING GROUP (OG)

An OG to be established composed of representatives of:

i.          Voting delegates from affiliated bona-fide Labour Left/Momentum constituency groups,

ii.          Voting delegates from Labour Party Branches

            OR

            Voting delegates from their CLPs

iii.         Voting delegates from affiliated trade unions,

iv.         Voting delegates from affiliated broad left organisations,

v.         Voting members from Labour Party organisations representing special interests or particular groups                    of members

3.1

The role of the OG is to interpret and implement policy,

3.2

The OG to meet quarterly

3.2

Groups/organisations with:

i.          up to 1000 members are entitled to ONE delegate

ii.          over 1000 members are entitled to THREE delegates

3.3

Decisions of the OG will normally be arrived at by consensus.

Where opinion is strongly divided a decision will be taken by a show of hands.

3.4

Unions are entitled to send representatives from branch, regional or national level, but they may not have representatives from branches within regions where their region itself is represented. Trade union national offices are entitled to ONE representative.

3.5

Motions to the OG may be submitted by any of the above affiliated bodies having been duly proposed, seconded and adopted by these bodies.

3.6

Motions must be submitted two weeks before the OG meeting date and circulated to all constituent groups at least one week before the meeting.

3.7

Amendments may be submitted up to 24 hours before the OG meeting date.

3.8

Emergency motions and amendments may be submitted during the OG meeting at the discretion of the Chair.

3.9

OG meetings shall be minuted, the minutes distributed/made available to all OG members. The minutes shall be approved, and amended where appropriate, at the next OG meeting.

3.10

The OG will determine an attendance figure for its meetings to be quorate.

4.0

THE OFFICERS GROUP

The OG is to elect from its membership officers to carry out the day to day functions of LLA, these officers to be:

Chair

Vice Chair (or two Co-Chairs)

Secretary

Treasurer

Membership and Affiliations secretary

Media and Communications Officer

Website Manager

Social Media Officer

Information Officer

Campaigns Officer

National Organiser

4.1

The Officers Group may add Officer posts as it sees fit, to be agreed at the next OG. Once agreed by the OG new officers will have voting rights.

4.2

The Officers Group my co-opt members for specific purposes, to act as advisors or to assist in specific pieces of work. Co-opted members may attend and contribute to the Officers group, but will not have a vote.

4.3

The Officers Group shall not exceed 15 members.

5.0

CONDUCT & COMPLIANCE

5.1

The Officers Group is tasked with establishing an executive body to oversee conduct and compliance with LLA principles and constitution, and to establish a disciplinary procedure which is completely based on the principles of natural justice and due process.

5.2

Application of the membership rules in the case of people who have been suspended or expelled from the Labour Party as part of the witch-hunt against the left shall be the responsibility of the Officers Group.

5.3

The Organising Group may recall any member of the Officers Group by a specially convened meeting of the OG, of which there shall be two months notice. Recall shall be based on violation of LLA Principles, failure to fulfil responsibilities, or a significant breakdown in trust. This process can be initiated by any two of the of affiliated bodies of the OG provided they are not from the same category.

(the categories being those in 3. i. – v. above).

Proposed: Glyn Secker,  Dulwich & West Norwood

Seconded: Jessica Pigg, Dulwich & West Norwood

E) Merseyside Labour Left Alliance

Download as Word file here and PDF file here

Merseyside LLA calls upon the national LLA to organize within and beyond the Labour Party. We now need as broad –based a socialist movement as possible, which will include those within the Labour Party willing to put up a fight, and focus towards the wider anti-austerity movement and the myriad battles against Tory policies and their repercussions.

Chris Williamson court case

Here are a number of motions currently going forward in various branches and CLPs. Feel free to chop and change.

PLEASE  NOTE THERE IS NO BAN ON MOVING MOTIONS IN SUPPORT OF CHRIS: We hear that, again, in a number of branches and CLPs, the chair has prevented the meeting from discussing motions in support of Chris because of apparent guidelines sent out by Labour HQ. Labour Against the Witchhunt have produced detailed advice to show that this is not the case – click here for more info and details on  how to move a motion.

1) Motion on Chris Williamson court case

This branch/CLP notes with concern

  1. the judgement of the High Court that the Labour Party had “acted unfairly” in retrospectively re-imposing suspension of Chris Williamson MP following the decision of a panel of the National Executive Committee to reinstate his membership; that “there was no proper reason for reopening the case against Mr Williamson”; and that this act was “unlawful”;
  2. the misuse of precious Labour Party funds to defend this unlawful procedure in the High Court;
  3. the further persecution by the Labour Party in arbitrarily imposing on Chris Williamson a second suspension.

We consider the entire report by Judge Pepperall a damning indictment of our party’s internal disciplinary procedures, and declare our loss of confidence in the integrity of the current disciplinary process, rendering it unfit for purpose. We therefore call on the General Secretary to:

  1. lift the suspension of Chris Williamson MP forthwith;
  2. end the practice of instant expulsions and suspensions;
  3. reinstate the membership of all those summarily expelled or suspended without due process;
  4. conduct a comprehensive review of the party’s legal, disciplinary and disputes procedures; and
  5. ensure that all future disciplinary procedures are carried out in accordance with the principles of natural justice.

* * * * For your information, here are some background notes… Chris Williamson MP was suspended on February 27. On June 26, a three-person antisemitism panel of Labour’s National Executive Committee voted to reinstate Williamson. This was made up of Keith Vaz MP, Huda Elmi and Gerarld Howarth MP. On June 27, following a public campaign against the decision led by Tom Watson, Keith Vaz claimed that he was undergoing medical procedures and felt that he had “not been fit” to consider any of the cases dealt with that day. On June 28, general secretary Jennie Formby informed all NEC members that the decision of the panel would be revisited by the full NEC Disputes Panel. This decided on July 9 that Williamson was suspended again and on July 19 it referred Williamson’s case to the party’s National Constitutional Committee. In his judgement of October 10 2019, judge Edward Pepperall ruled that “the party acted unfairly” in re-suspending Chris Williamson MP on July 9 and that “there was no proper reason for reopening the case against Mr Williamson and referring the original allegations to the NCC”. Judge Pepperall declared the re-suspension “unlawful” and that “the Labour Party is no longer able lawfully to pursue the original [February 27] disciplinary case against Mr Williamson”. Judge Pepperall explained that it was “not difficult to infer that the true reason for the decision [to re-suspend Chris] in this case was that [NEC] members were influenced by the ferocity of the outcry following the June decision.” He referenced Tom Watson organising a public letter of 90 MPs and peers and another letter by 70 Labour staffers, demanding that Jeremy Corbyn strip Williamson of the whip. He also mentioned Margaret Hodge’s claim that the decision meant the “party is turning a blind eye to Jew-hate”. The judge made scathing criticisms of Keith Vaz, who “by June 27 appears to have had seconds thoughts about the matter” by raising “issues about his health”. “It would be surprising if, as an experienced Parliamentarian, Mr Vaz, a) had taken part in an important meeting if he felt himself unfit to do so; and b) then failed to clearly make that point in his subsequent email.” Further, the judge thinks it “surprising” that neither George Howarth nor Huda Elmi “raised the issue of his fitness either at the time or subsequently”. On September 3, a week before the hearing started, the Labour Party issued Chris Williamson with a second suspension on top of his first one. These new allegations, listed in the judgement, clearly do not warrant a suspension: “sending an email to a member of the public who had complained to you about your criticism of Margaret Hodge MP that referred her to a video critical of Margaret Hodge; publicly legitimising or endorsing the misconduct of members or former members who have been found grossly detrimental or prejudicial to the Labour Party; publicly characterising the disciplinary process of the party as politically motivated and/or not genuine. However, as the party had followed its own constitutional procedures correctly, the judge could find “nothing inherently unfair in investigating these fresh allegations”. This is why Chris Williamson remains suspended from the party.

Please note that the press have wrongly reported that Chris Williamson lost his appeal. That is a wilful misrepresentation. He remains suspended on the new charges, on which no ruling has been made.


2) LAW model motion (long)

A shorter version is available further below.

1) This branch/CLP notes:

a) That Chris Williamson MP was suspended on February 27. On June 26, a three-person antisemitism panel of Labour’s National Executive Committee voted to reinstate Williamson. This was made up of Keith Vaz MP, Huda Elmi and Gerald Howarth MP.

b) That on June 27, following a public campaign against the decision led by Tom Watson, Keith Vaz claimed that he was undergoing medical procedures and felt that he had “not been fit” to consider any of the cases dealt with that day.

c) That on June 28, general secretary Jennie Formby informed all NEC members that the decision of the panel would be revisited by the full NEC Disputes Panel. This decided on July 9 that Williamson was suspended again and on July 19 it referred Williamson’s case to the party’s National Constitutional Committee (as this is dominated by the right, a referral usually results in expulsion).

2) We further note:

a) That in his judgement of October 10 2019, judge Edward Pepperall ruled that, “the party acted unfairly” in re-suspending Chris Williamson MP on July 9 and that “there was no proper reason for reopening the case against Mr Williamson and referring the original allegations to the NCC”. Judge Pepperall declared the re-suspension “unlawful” and that “the Labour Party is no longer able lawfully to pursue the original [February 27] disciplinary case against Mr Williamson”.

b) That judge Pepperall explains that it was “not difficult to infer that the true reason for the decision [to re-suspend Chris] in this case was that [NEC] members were influenced by the ferocity of the outcry following the June decision.” He references Tom Watson organising a public letter of 90 MPs and peers and another letter by 70 Labour staffers, demanding that Jeremy Corbyn strip Williamson of the whip. He also mentions Margaret Hodge’s claim that the decision meant the “party is turning a blind eye to Jew-hate”.

c) That the judge makes scathing criticisms of Keith Vaz, who “by June 27 appears to have had seconds thoughts about the matter” by raising “issues about his health”. “It would be surprising if, as an experienced Parliamentarian, Mr Vaz, a) had taken part in an important meeting if he felt himself unfit to do so; and b) then failed to clearly make that point in his subsequent email.” Further, the judge thinks it “surprising” that neither George Howarth nor Huda Elmi “raised the issue of his fitness either at the time or subsequently”.

d) That Labour Party HQ repeatedly briefed against Chris Williamson in the media – including the release of private details about his case – which resulted in him being abused and smeared in public by wild and unsubstantiated allegations. Meanwhile, he was not allowed to defend himself, as he was required to sign a confidentiality statement. As opposed to Labour Party HQ, he fully complied with this requirement. In fact, the judge was so concerned about those leaks that he even asked the Party lawyers for them to discontinue.

3) We note with great concern, however:

a) That on September 3, a week before the hearing started, the Labour Party issued Chris Williamson with a second suspension on top of his first one.

b) That these new allegations, listed in the judgement, clearly do not warrant a suspension:

  • “Sending an email to a member of the public who had complained to you about your criticism of Margaret Hodge MP that referred her to a video” which was critical of Margaret Hodge.
  • “Publicly legitimising or endorsing the misconduct of members or former members” who have been found “grossly detrimental or prejudicial to the Labour Party” – ie, standing up for Marc Wadsworth, Jackie Walker, Ken Livingstone etc.
  • “Publicly characterising the disciplinary process of the party” as “politically motivated and/or not genuine”.

c) However, as the party had followed its own constitutional procedures correctly, the judge could find “nothing inherently unfair in investigating these fresh allegations”.

d) That this is why Chris Williamson remains suspended from the party.

4) This CLP believes:

a) That the report by Judge Pepperall is a damning indictment of our party’s internal disciplinary procedures. If anything, it proves that Chris Williamson was correct to criticise the disciplinary process of the party as “politically motivated” (one of the allegations leading to his September 3 suspension).

b) That Chris Williamson has said and done nothing that could be characterised as anti-Semitic or that warrants his ongoing suspension from the party. His September 3 suspension was only launched to stop him from becoming Labour’s parliamentary candidate in Derby North once again: suspended members are not allowed to stand.

c) That this shows to what length Labour HQ will go in its futile campaign to try and appease the right in the party. But they will never accept Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party, let alone prime minister. They will continue their campaign of sabotage, because he remains unreliable from the ruling class’s point of view, especially given his strong support for the rights of Palestinians.

d) That there is a total loss of confidence in the competence, credibility and integrity of the current disciplinary process, rendering it unfit for purpose.

e) That this brings into serious question the veracity and the credibility of this latest suspension of Chris Williamson, as well as the disciplinary measures taken against many other members.

5) We therefore call on the General Secretary Jennie Formby to:

a) Order a comprehensive overhaul of the Labour Party legal, disciplinary and disputes body. The party must end the practice of automatic and instant expulsions and suspensions and all those summarily expelled or suspended without due process should be immediately reinstated. Disciplinary procedures should be carried out in accordance with the principles of natural justice.

b) Order an investigation into the conduct of members of the NEC Disputes Panel and any Party members, including MPs, who have interfered with and corrupted disciplinary processes. On completion of such an investigation that the appropriate disciplinary measures be taken against anyone found to be in breach of procedural regulations, leaking confidential material to the press or guilty of any other misconduct.

c) Order the immediate lifting of the suspension of Chris Williamson MP and issue an apology to him.



3) Law model motion (short)

1) This branch/CLP notes:

a) That in his judgement of October 10 2019, judge Edward Pepperall ruled that, “the party acted unfairly” in re-suspending Chris Williamson MP on July 9 and that “the Labour Party is no longer able lawfully to pursue the original [February 27] disciplinary case against Mr Williamson”.

b) That judge Pepperall explains that it was “not difficult to infer that the true reason for the decision [to re-suspend Chris] was that [NEC] members were influenced by the ferocity of the outcry following the June [26] decision.”

c) That on September 3, a week before the hearing started, the Labour Party issued Chris Williamson with a second suspension on top of his first one. These are the allegations listed in the judgment:

  • “Sending an email to a member of the public who had complained to you about your criticism of Margaret Hodge MP that referred her to a video” which was critical of Margaret Hodge.
  • “Publicly legitimising or endorsing the misconduct of members or former members” who have been found “grossly detrimental or prejudicial to the Labour Party” – ie, standing up for Marc Wadsworth, Jackie Walker, Ken Livingstone etc.
  • “Publicly characterising the disciplinary process of the party” as “politically motivated and/or not genuine”.

d) That, as the party had followed its own constitutional procedures correctly, the judge could find “nothing inherently unfair in investigating these fresh allegations”.

e) That this is why Chris Williamson remains suspended from the party.

2) This CLP believes:

a) That the report by Judge Pepperall is a damning indictment of our party’s internal disciplinary procedures. If anything, it proves that Chris Williamson was correct to criticise the disciplinary process of the party as “politically motivated” (one of the allegations leading to his second suspension).

b) That Chris Williamson has said and done nothing that could be characterised as anti-Semitic or that warrants his ongoing suspension from the party. The September 3 suspension was only launched to stop him from becoming Labour’s parliamentary candidate in Derby North once again: suspended members are not allowed to stand.

c) That this shows to what length Labour HQ will go in its futile campaign to try and appease the right in the party. But they will never accept Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party, let alone prime minister. They will continue their campaign of sabotage, because he remains unreliable from the ruling class’s point of view, especially given his strong support for the rights of Palestinians.

d) That there is a total loss of confidence in the competence, credibility and integrity of the current disciplinary process, rendering it unfit for purpose.

e) That this brings into serious question the veracity and the credibility of this latest suspension of Chris Williamson, as well as the disciplinary measures taken against many other members.

3) We therefore call on the General Secretary to:

a) Order a comprehensive overhaul of the Labour Party legal, disciplinary and disputes body. The party must end the practice of automatic and instant expulsions and suspensions and all those summarily expelled or suspended without due process should be immediately reinstated. Disciplinary procedures should be carried out in accordance with the principles of natural justice.

b) Order an investigation into the conduct of members of the NEC Disputes Panel and any Party members, including MPs, who have interfered with and corrupted disciplinary processes. On completion of such an investigation that the appropriate disciplinary measures be taken against anyone found to be in breach of procedural regulations, leaking confidential material to the press or guilty of any other misconduct.

c) Order the immediate lifting of the suspension of Chris Williamson MP and issue an apology to him.

Why the time has come to build a democratic Labour Left Alliance

Ever since Jeremy Corbyn put his name forward to stand as leader of the Labour Party there has been a massive campaign to undermine and remove him by the Tories, elements of the establishment and the right in our own party, with backing from the overwhelming majority of the mainstream media. Of the numerous unfounded smears thrown at Corbyn – being too scruffy, not bowing deep enough, being a Czech spy etc – those around antisemitism have been one of the most consistent avenues of attack.

They have not had everything their own way – Moshé Machover was readmitted to the party after a major campaign and their attempts to move against Lisa Forbes, now the MP for Peterborough, before and after her election have not succeeded. Momentum nationally is no longer on the side of the left in these battles and this has become increasingly clear – as has its own lack of democracy.

There is an urgent need to take steps to unite the genuine, democratic Labour left. We are committed to making this process open, democratic and transparent. We want to involve as many principled local, regional and national Labour left organisations and union bodies as we can.

We are not saying anyone should resign from or disaffiliate from Momentum to participate. But one of our concerns is that if we don’t act now people who joined to support Corbyn will leave in disillusion. The need to move at pace must be balanced with the need to build in a democratic and sustainable way. Several national organisations got this endeavour started, and now there are several dozen local groups signed up to this initiative, and we are having positive discussions with many more.

We strongly encourage all signatories to join the Labour Party and we also welcome those who have been suspended or expelled as part of the witch-hunt against Jeremy Corbyn. We encourage all comrades not already members of local Labour Left groups to get involved in one or help set one up. We will gladly help you to find a speaker, advertise your meeting or assist in any other way we can.

Labour belongs to us – let’s unite and fight for our party!

Click here to read and sign up to the appeal!