Toe the line or you’re out, London-centric committee tells members
The ‘United Left’ group’s behaviour has hardly matched its name since its controversial decision to back Steve Turner to be the Unite union’s next general secretary despite a decisive number of supporters of Howard Beckett being barred from voting in its hustings last year.
The group expelled its entire Scottish ‘PULS’ section for demanding transparency about the ballot, while around half its Welsh members are understood to have been driven out by a ‘diktat’ that they must follow the London-dominated executive’s decision to endorse Turner or be kicked out.
And now the organisation has notified all its members that if they refuse to accept the decision, they are automatically excluded. A message to members reads:
At the United Left National Coordinating Committee meeting held on 21st April 2021 the following motion was unanimously agreed.
“The United Left welcomes all Unite members who support the UL candidate Steve Turner. Steve is the democratically elected and endorsed UL candidate.
If any UL member actively supports any other GS candidate they will have put themselves outside of the United Left.”
The United Left NCC
However, ULnow faces what presumably was an unintended consequence.
With the departure of committed supporters of Howard Beckett and Sharon Graham and with Scotland expelled and half the Welsh membership gone – and north-west UL having already declared that it will not support Turner or any of the candidates – UL will number only few hundred members, down from its original complement of around 1,100, shredding its claim to be a representative left organisation within the giant union.
Assuming, of course, that the job wasn’t already achieved by the decision to attempt rule by diktat after a contested and shaky selection.
Update: UL Wales has denied losing half its members, saying: “We had members who didn’t rejoin as they wished to back other candidates.”
The SKWAWKBOX needs your help. The site is provided free of charge but depends on the support of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to without hardship, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal or here to set up a monthly donation via GoCardless (SKWAWKBOX will contact you to confirm the GoCardless amount). Thanks for your solidarity so SKWAWKBOX can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.
If you wish to republish this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.