The current challenges to Labour’s socialist leadership are being echoed among the socialist societies.
Sources close to former Blair minister Ian McCartney tell SKWAWKBOX that he will stand in February for Chair of the Labour-affiliated Socialist Health Association, as part of a slate the Labour right hopes will replace the current left-wing leadership.
Others thought likely to appear on the leadership slate include Labour First’s Gurinder Singh Josan, who has failed several times to get elected to Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC), former Camden Council leader Dame Jane Roberts, and current SHA Council members Brian Fisher and Jean Hardiman Smith. More from the right are being recruited to stand for 20 elected Council places.
As well as contributing to Labour’s election manifesto, the current SHA leadership was responsible for steering a radical NHS composite motion, to renationalise England’s NHS, through Labour’s 2017 conference (ref 1). The motion was passed unanimously and remains party policy.
In 2018, the SHA’s leadership had to undertake a lengthy and difficult disciplinary process in order to dispense with the services of a former coordinator whom the organisation said it found had threatened staff at a meeting and attempted to influence the outcome of SHA elections.
More recently, the largest SHA branch, in Greater Manchester, was suspended for several months following the discovery of a massive sign-up of non-participating members – some of whom proved to be fake – aimed at influencing the make up of delegations to local CLP general committees. The reformed branch is now under new management.
A number of Tory supporters have been boasting on social media of joining socialist societies to try to obtain a vote in Labour’s leadership election.
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