Scottish Labour Party

Scottish Labour right is wrong to attack McDonnell

Author

Ann Field

In 2014, the Scottish Labour right wing virtually destroyed Labour in Scotland by allying with the Tories in “Better Together”. Now, in 2019, they’re back for a repeat performance.

The 2014 class collaboration with the Tories resulted in: the loss of 40 out of 41 Westminster seats in 2015; the loss of 13 Holyrood seats in 2016, leaving Labour a poor third behind the Tories; and the loss of a raft of council seats and control of Glasgow City Council in 2017.

Scottish Labour, the Euro-elections and long-term decline

Author

Ann Field

In Scotland Labour’s share of the vote in last Thursday’s EU election slumped to just over 9%, costing it both its sitting MEPs. It came fifth overall, just one percentage point ahead of the Greens. In 2014 Scottish Labour had won 26% of the vote.

In some local authority areas Labour did far worse. In Edinburgh Scottish Labour came sixth, with 7% of the vote. In the Scottish Borders it also came sixth, with less than 3% of the vote and less than one percentage point ahead of Change UK.

Scottish Labour and the Glasgow council issue

Author

Dale Street

The long-running campaign for equal pay for Glasgow City Council women workers, finally settled in February 2019, is on the agenda of the Scottish Labour Party annual conference, taking place in Dundee on 9-10 March 2019.

A motion submitted by the Scottish Labour Women’s Conference – tabled at that conference by the GMB, which represented many of the low-paid women – notes the resistance to equal pay for local authority women workers, “including during years of Labour power”.

Glasgow equal pay: accounts to settle

Author

Ann Field

Last October, the lack of progress in settling a long-running dispute at Glasgow City Council led to the biggest equal-pay strike in British history.

On Monday 21 January, over 250 women members of the GMB employed by Glasgow City Council attended a meeting to hear an update on the campaign.

The previous week the media had reported that agreement had been reached with the now SNP-­run Council in a dispute stretching back to 2006, when the then Labour­controlled council introduced a new pay scheme to address gender-­based pay inequalities.

The crisis of Scottish Labour

Author

Dale Street

The Crisis of Scottish Labour

A Survation opinion poll carried out in mid-November found that Labour had a 1% lead over the Tories in England and a 17% lead over the Tories in Wales. But in Scotland Labour was on just 23%, a poor third behind the SNP (40%) and the Tories (27%).

As with any opinion poll, the precise figures are open to challenge. But as far as Scotland is concerned, the figures reflect the experiences of many Labour canvassers on the doorstep. Two overlapping factors explain the polling figures for Scotland.

The issues behind the Glasgow equal pay strike

Author

Dale Street

Up to 8,000 Glasgow City Council workers, members of the GMB and Unison, took part in last week’s two-day equal pay strike.

For 48 hours only emergency cover was available in home care services. Primary schools and nursery schools were closed. Secondary schools were open, but without a school-meals service.

Workers in Glasgow’s four refuse and recycling centres refused to cross picket lines, bringing refuse collection to a halt for the duration of the strike. Some parking attendants and museum and libraries staff also refused to cross picket lines.

“Glasgow Labour has much work to do...”

Author

Ann Field

“Glasgow Labour has much work to do to regain the trust of our communities, and to be given the chance to form an administration again… Over the coming years, Glasgow will face enormous challenges.” That’s what the publicity said for an all-members conference organised last weekend by Glasgow City Council Labour Group.

Glasgow Labour backs direct action against Serco

Author

Ann Field

Over 50 Labour Party politicians and office-bearers in and around Glasgow have put their names to a statement backing “direct action” to prevent Serco implementing its policy of changing the locks on asylum-seeker accommodation.

The statement was initiated by Labour Party members active in the campaigning triggered by Serco’s announcement in late July that it would be evicting asylum-seekers deemed no longer eligible for support by changing the locks on their accommodation.

Sarwar's business backers

Author

Ann Field

Anas Sarwar spent more than twice as much as Richard Leonard in the Scottish Labour Party (SLP) leadership contest held late last year. A large proportion of the donations came from businesses linked to his family.

Sarwar spent over £150,000 during the ten-week election campaign. The largest campaign donation (£41,000) came from United Brands Ltd., part of United Wholesale (Scotland) Ltd. (UWS), which was founded by Sarwar’s father and uncle and is now run by his brother Asim.

Left candidate wins Scottish Labour leadership

Author

Dale Street

On Saturday 18 November, Richard Leonard was announced as the new Scottish Labour leader. In the election contest triggered by the sudden resignation of Kezia Dugdale, he defeated Anas Sarwar by 57% to 43%.

Among individual members Leonard had a narrow majority (52% to 48%). Among affiliated trade union supporters he had an overwhelming majority (77% to 23%). Among registered supporters Anas Sarwar secured a narrow majority (52% to 48%).

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