Organisation often presented as representative has only few hundred members eligible to vote – and many university Labour societies have disaffiliated from it in disgust
A short video has been published showcasing controversies involving ‘Labour Students’ (LS) and the decisions of numerous university Labour clubs to have nothing to do with the organisation.
The group is often presented by media as representative of student members of the Labour Party, especially when it makes comments critical of the party’s leadership. However, it reportedly had only around 500 members eligible to vote – and many of those complained that they were blocked from voting in the recent election of LS officers, which was said to have involved only 125 votes.
LS is also often presented as a youth organisation, but in fact students of any age are technically eligible to join – though joining appears to be restricted and the organisation has been accused of not answering emails nor holding meetings.
By contrast, Young Labour – limited to members up to the age of 27 years – has some ninety thousand members.
LS was originally created to combat the left-wing ‘Young Socialists’ in the 1980s and has remained staunchly right-wing ever since. Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) was forced to intervene in 2017 to ensure that LS did not have undue influence on the election of the NEC’s youth representative.
The NEC move was triggered by an attempt by the Labour right to give a few hundred LS members equal voting weight to Young Labour’s ninety thousand. The attempted disenfranchisement caused outrage in Young Labour – and its prevention was met by predictable whines from those who wished to maintain LS influence.
An awareness of the recent history of the Labour Party, its genuinely-representative youth arm and of LS paints a very different picture to the one usually presented in the media. But now a short video has been published to make the reality of Labour Students easily accessible.
The video captures many of the controversies, disassociations and comments in an easy format to debunk attempts to present Labour Students as something it is not.
The video, created by a Labour-supporting social media user, is reproduced below as published, except that this version has been slowed down slightly from its Twitter format to enhance readability.
The information it contains deserves to go viral:
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