What Labour conference demanded

Submitted by AWL on 5 October, 2021 - 11:19 Author: Mohan Sen
Labour Party conference 2021

Despite Starmer’s success, with the help of the Unison machine, in getting his rule changes through, the conference consistently voted for left-wing policy. We must mobilise the labour movement in support of these policies, in the party, in workplaces and on the streets.

Policies passed included a “Socialist Green New Deal” with:

• full public ownership of energy

• creating millions of well-paid, unionised green jobs with publicly-owned bodies

• a just transition with a comprehensive retraining program and job guarantee on union rates for affected workers

• expanded and publicly-owned transport, with free local bus services

• debt relief and financial and technological support for climate action in poor countries

• repeal of all anti-union laws so workers can freely take industrial action to drive solutions to climate chaos.

Text for public ownership of the banks submitted by the Fire Brigades Union and the Bakers’ Union disappeared in the compositing meeting. The conference also unfortunately passed, by a much narrower margin (59-41), a motion from the GMB supporting “green gas”.

Policy passed on workers’ rights included:

• a £15ph minimum wage

• statutory sick pay at living-wage-level for all workers

• full rights from day one of a job

• measures to require employers to bargain collectively with unions

• repeal of all anti-union laws.

Shadow Secretary of State Andy McDonald, who had just published a “New Deal for Working People” Green Paper as left-wing as anything under Corbyn, was told by Starmer to block a £15 minimum wage and living-wage-level sick pay in compositing, and resigned in protest.

The conference also voted for:

• Not just stopping, but reversing, local government cuts.

• Building 150,000 social rent homes a year, including 100,000 council homes, and funding for councils to do it.

• A pro-trans rights stance, including measures to deal with the scandal of backlog in trans health services.

• A “national food service”, with access to food guaranteed by law.

• Condemnation of the Australian nuclear-powered submarines pact.

• To “remove profit” from the social care system.

• To oppose the current plans to reorganise the NHS round “integrated care systems” and reverse privatisation to re-establish a universal, comprehensive, public health service.

Clear proposals for full public ownership of social care were removed in compositing, and so was the call for a 15% increase for NHS workers got taken out.

All motions passed are in the Conference Arrangements Committee reports here . The conference also passed many “references-back” on parts of the National Policy Forum report. This included one on neurodiversity policies promoted by Neurodivergent Labour. Absurdly, Momentum refused to support any references back!

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