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Phillips leadership campaign run by two people previously accused of abuse toward black women

Campaign chair Streeting and campaign director Kennedy both subject of earlier allegations

Jess Phillips

Labour leadership hopeful Jess Phillips has appointed two people to run her campaign who have both previously been accused of abusive behaviour toward black women.

A former Tom Watson staffer last year accused Baroness Alicia Kennedy of racial discrimination, harassment and bullying and also claimed that she had been made redundant because of her ethnicity. The case was filed and accepted by the Central London Employment Tribunal.

Kennedy has been appointed as the Phillips campaign director.

Alicia Kennedy denied any wrongdoing, describing the allegations at the time as “untrue and highly damaging”. The SKWAWKBOX has been unable to find any indication that the case has been resolved and the Central London Employment Tribunal has not answered calls.

The Labour Party declined to comment, saying that it does not comment on ‘staffing matters’.

Jess Phillips has also made parliamentary colleague Wes Streeting her campaign chair.

In 2018, Streeting was accused by MPs and others of ‘disgusting and disgraceful’ behaviour toward Labour front-bencher Diane Abbott. Witnesses said that he confronted the ‘shell-shocked’ Shadow Home Secretary ‘in her personal space’ in a parliamentary corridor, shouting at her in an ‘aggressive rant’ also described as ‘bullying’, ‘intimidating’ and ‘very threatening’.

Witnesses also said that Streeting had to be moved away from Abbott by a fellow MP with a hand on Streeting’s arm.

Streeting denied the allegations, taking to Twitter to describe the article as lies ‘with no sources’ and threatening to take legal action:

The SKWAWKBOX subsequently published the witness comments gathered by its legal team:

Streeting’s lawyers did write to the SKWAWKBOX, which responded publicly as well as to them. The article remains online. The threatened legal action did not proceed further.

Jess Phillips’ office did not respond to a request for comment on these matters. As the SKWAWKBOX revealed earlier today, the MP has also appointed to a senior campaign position a Wes Streeting staffer who in 2018 pleaded guilty to breaking electoral law.

Baroness Kennedy did not respond to a request for comment sent yesterday.

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34 comments

  1. Shameful that the likes of $treeting are MPs while decent human beings like CW are banned

      1. BBC has Chris Williamson as a guest on Westminster Hour; this I can’t believe.

    1. I take it you are referring to the comments made by the BAME members of the Womens PLP who called Jess “white feminist” because she openly supported white women who were verbally abused but never said one word in support of Diane Abbott , In fact she joined in the mocking laughter directed at Diane in the Peston Programme .
      Jess is also allegedly an anti racist but again has never given Diane any support whatsoever.
      She clearly thinks there is a hierarchy of racism – Diane being called a N***** and being subjected to rape and death threats does not warrant her outrage while Ruth Smeeth being called antisemitic names and being subjected to rape and threats does warrant it.
      These double standards demonstrate that Jess is neither a feminist nor an anti racist. Jess is, and always has been , in it for herself and is always on the lookout for a bandwagon to jump on .

      1. Reply to Steve H
        Jess Phillips denied she was responsible for endangering the domestic abuse victim and it couldn’t be proved otherwise but she can never deny her failure to support Diane Abbott a black woman who is one of the toughest bravest decent women in parliament. Diane was the first black woman elected and faced and still faces her own hostile environment from the likes of Jess Phillips who’s not fit to lick her boots and has the barefaced cheek to put herself forward as an anti racist.

  2. 9/10 for Narcissism
    9/10 for Ambition
    0/10 for Socialism
    9/10 for Tory friendships
    9/10 for Yes to Murdoch invitations

    Not ideal scores for a Labour Leadership Contender.
    NB – Your mileage may vary, contents may settle in transit.

    1. Aren’t you being a bit generous in your scoring Heenan 73? Only 9/10 for narcissism, ambition , Tory friendships ( Rees Mogg for heavens sake) and Murdock invitations. However your score of 0/10 for Socialism is spot on,

      1. I err on the side of generosity, only because (believe it or believe it not), there are worse people in the party.

        That’s our tragedy!

      2. Reply to Heenan 73
        I think we’ll have to agree to differ on that Comrade.

      3. Smartboy 16/01/2020 at 1:49 am

        Regardless of the veracity or otherwise of her denials it would be difficult to argue that she hasn’t lost the trust of BAME Labour MPs who now constitutes 20% of the PLP.

      4. Oops, sorry Smartboy the above was intended as a reply to your 01:49 am comment to myself above.

      5. No problem Steve H.
        Whether a person believes Jess’s denials or not is up to themselves – it will always be a matter of opinion.
        However it is a fact that Jess cannot dispute that she, the chair of the Womens PLP let Diane down very badly and as we know lost the confidence of the BAME Womens PLP. ( and many of the members) as a result.

  3. Talk about a rock and a hard place!

    I have had my doubts about RLB from the beginning: I’ve tried hard to ‘give her another chance’ – but she’s used up 100 chances and now does not look to me like someone who can defend the gains of the Corbyn years, let alone take the project forward.
    At best she’s a Lansman puppet (and that’s a pretty poor best), at worst she’s an overambitious wonk who is out of touch with the Left (let alone other voters), and should have stuck to being a backroom policy writer.
    It isn’t her fault that she has no charisma, but it is her responsibility to focus on the issues that matter to the electorate, not Mr Lansman’s private agenda. She is a highly intelligent person who has much to give the Labour party, but I cannot think of anything she’s said or done that says to me “She’ll be an exciting leader”.

    I’ll not be voting in the leadership poll, but will vote in the Deputies’ poll, and not for the favourite (though she’ll get my second pref.).

    I’ve been advising people all over social media to “hang in there until the conference, that will tell us where Labour’s going”. But if JP wins, I’m not sure I’ll be able to do that.

    1. I have decided to stay in the Party, come what may. I doubt (OK – hostage to fortune stuff) that there are sufficient members stupid enough to vote for The Mouth. But if nightmares come true, I’ll hang in, say it as it is, and get slung out if that’s the way the wind blows.

      The problem is that the much needed ‘solidarity’ will be impossible to achieve in the Party if the worst happens. And, no, I’m not joining the Tooting brigade, either, with notions of the formation of an irrelevant splinter group.

      1. The electorate doesn’t give a shit. Just like the majority of ‘Labour Heartlands’ and ‘Core Voters’ don’t give a shit about Labour. 🙂

        The remark simply follows on the heels of what is a clearly a live issue for members of the Party – as raised here frequently, and on other sites. It’s known as an ‘opinion’.

      2. RH Tooting is a lovely area with a great atmosphere and a melting pot of different cultures and diverse range of people.You may want to sample one of the best traditional pie and mash shops in London,just acrross from tooting bec tube station and colliers wood rd…Lovely people and many good comrades,although I doubt you will meet wolfie and the popular front.And on a more serious note I am pleased that you are staying in the Labour party and give the thought police hell.!

  4. Ruth Smeeth is indulging in Gas-Lighting again, apparently another reality really does exist. 😏

    “Too many of my colleagues thought that it would be too difficult to stand publicly with me. Too many sent nice text messages but wouldn’t speak out against the racism we were seeing daily in our party. Too many were happy to hide behind the Jewish women who were having to lead the fight alone rather than help shoulder the burden. Too many abandoned us when we needed them. “
    https://labourlist.org/2020/01/ruth-smeeth-why-im-backing-ian-murray-for-deputy-leader/

    1. Ruth Smeeth was parachuted into the Stoke on Trent seat, best bit about the 2019 GE was her losing her seat. Since GE night I haven’t heard her kick up a stink about people of the potteries being left to fight alone !! She’s another meme, a paper tiger/ show boater /glory hunter

  5. Well, it just proves one point, or raher an old saying: she is as good (or bad) as the company she keeps. All she has proven to everyone is that she is totally unelectable.

      1. Steve Richards 16/01 at 11:59 am
        What do they share?

        It is certainly not a love and respect for Jess Philips. Read the article, from start to finish it is very critical of Jess.

    1. Does this woman never stop earning – greed and self promotion seems to underlie everything she does..

  6. Meanwhile, has anyone noticed this corker? :

    ” Keith Vaz has made a surprise bid to re-enter Labour politics after being declared as the chair of the constituency party that he represented for 32 years”

    … and all the while, the Tories are walking to the bank with a grin on their faces.

  7. I note that Skwawkbox has published a good, forensic article about the confused wind-vane self-seeker that is Lansman.

    I also note that the article isn’t open to comments.

    Even recognizing the danger of ‘nutters on the net’, I really don’t think that shying away is the answer to the attempts at ‘antisemism’ bullying by the BoD nexus.

    Harvey Goldstein makes a very relevant comment in response to an item on the JVL website :

    ““All of this is part of a more general position that the ‘left’ should be taking which is to try and tell the truth – even where it may be uncomfortable.”

    1. https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/jan/15/momentum-back-rebecca-long-bailey-poll-labour-leadership
      “Rebecca Long-Bailey is expected to win the backing of Momentum as a poll placed her ahead of closest rival for the Labour leadership, Keir Starmer.

      The shadow business secretary, who has been criticised for the slow start to her campaign, came out ahead of the shadow Brexit secretary based on first preferences, with 42% of the votes compared to his 37% in the poll, conducted by Survation of more than 3,800 LabourList readers .

      Although Starmer receives the majority of second preferences from all candidates in the race, they are not enough to eliminate Long-Bailey’s first round lead, with the overall result at 51 % to 49 % after second preferences are taken into account.”

  8. … and while we’re absorbed in this Leadership contest, have a look at what the ‘government’ of the spivs is doing, or threatening to do.- not least of which is trying to curtail judicial oversight of political decisions.

    Now why does this image of a forest of right arms raised at 45 degrees keep coming to mind when I think of the election?

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