Author Topic: Unite union 'to debate Labour link'  (Read 106 times)

Description: The Unite union is expected to debate ending its link with Labour

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Unite union 'to debate Labour link'
« on: May 18, 2015, 01:02:17 PM »

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Unite union 'to debate Labour link'

Unite union 'to debate Labour link'



   
   

       


   

       
Unite leader Len McCluskey

                        Unite leader Len McCluskey said the union's affiliation to the party could be reconsidered
                   

               

The Unite union is expected to debate ending its link with Labour when it meets for its July conference, the BBC understands.

Unite general secretary Len McCluskey has suggested ending financial support for Labour depending on the result of the party's leadership election.

But Labour's acting leader, Harriet Harman, said she did not think Unite would end its Labour affiliation.

She said new rules would ensure "the choice of the Labour Party" wins.

Unite sources say they expect motions to be tabled by English and Scottish branches, according to Norman Smith, BBC assistant political editor.

Many SNP-supporting Unite members are questioning the exclusive tie-ins with Labour, he said, adding: "This critical issue is now becoming interwoven with the whole debate about who is going to take over leadership of the Labour Party."

'Completely silly'

Mr McCluskey previously clashed with outgoing Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy, who said he was the "kiss of death" for the party.

Unite's affiliation to Labour could be reconsidered unless it showed it was the "voice of ordinary working people, that they are the voice of organised labour", he said.

But speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, Margaret Prosser, a former union leader and Labour treasurer, said it was "completely silly" just to focus on one group.

"The idea that the whole focus of Labour's proposal or offer ought to be around organised Labour is just daft," she said.

"We have to be able to say that the government, a Labour government is going to be there for all kinds of people."

Paul Kenny, of the GMB union, said her criticism was out of date.

'None of that'

But Mr Kenny told the BBC he would prefer to have a public row and "blood bath" now rather than in two years' time.

Ms Harman said Labour had changed the way its leader is elected.

"Last time the unions communicated directly with many of their members, sending them ballot papers with accompanying material only mentioning one candidate," she said.

"There will be none of that this time.

"The Electoral Reform Society will send out individual ballot papers to each member of the electorate."


   

Source: Unite union 'to debate Labour link'






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