Analysis Breaking Exclusive

Unite gives youth job to right-wing ex-councillor who ran city’s failed children’s services

Frazer Lake resigned as Fazakerley councillor less than three months after re-election – and tried to dodge blame for ‘devastating’ Ofsted report on Liverpool’s ‘inadequate’ services that put children in danger

Sharon Graham’s Unite has employed a failed right-wing former councillor as a youth officer – just months after the children’s services department he ran for Liverpool City Council was found by Ofsted to be so dangerously inadequate that children were put in harm’s way because of it.

Frazer Lake resigned as councillor for Fazakerley in the north-east of the city earlier this month – triggering a by-election not even three months since he stood there as a Labour candidate and promised Fazakerley residents his efforts on their behalf – because he had been offered an unspecified job by an unnamed union, starting immediately. He tried to avoid blame for the damning Ofsted report by claiming underlings had not made him aware of the scale of disaster in his department.

Now Skwawkbox can reveal that, according to sources inside the union, Lake has been employed by Sharon Graham’s Unite union as a youth officer.

This is not the first such issue at the union. A candidate backed by Graham in the union’s executive elections was subsequently found to have sexually harassed his wife’s carer and was ordered to pay her compensation – and stood despite being mired in the case at the time.

And Graham’s own tenure at Unite has been marked by a string of serious allegations, which neither she nor the union has ever denied – of abuse, cover-up and failure to protect women:

In addition, she has been exposed behind the union’s decision to ban showings in Unite’s buildings of a film exposing racism, smears, rigging and abuse by the Labour right and has grown increasingly cosy with red-Tory Labour ‘leader’ Keir Starmer, despite Starmer’s lies, his contempt for democracy, his u-turns on promises to Unite members and his regime’s repeated blocking of Unite-backed parliamentary candidates.

Liverpool Community Independents candidate Jean Martin and campaigners

Liverpool Community Independents candidate Jean Martin, who has deep roots in the community, is standing against Labour in the Fazakerley by-election.

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  1. If only Skwawkbox has conducted proper due diligence when Graham was running for the position of Unite General Secretary.
    Instead it chose to spend all its energies campaigning against Steve Turner making him the enemy to beat.
    Nothing against Howard Beckett but not matter how much Beckett was liked by community branches, he wasn’t going to win.
    As it is Graham has sidelined Beckett within Unite, and most high profiles backers of Turner. She is somehow triying to ensure that nobody from the left can run against her. This is something that I don’t believe Turner would have done.
    Thank you for reporting now, but a better due diligence in the past would have been more productive.

    1. By the same token Maria, you could say if only former Labour members had conducted proper due diligence on Starmer….blah,blah, blah.

      It’s the nature of enterists and wreckers that they lie. They also (in Labour and Unite’s cases) harness dis- and mis-information by the six oligarch-owned corporations that control 92% of the world’s media.

      My point is, Maria, ‘due dilligence’ by SW or any of us would probably not have uncovered the full extent of the Graham/Starmer/centrist danger.

      1. I think that we can blame McCluskey and Beckett for Turner’s defeat. Turner was the favourite before he was persuaded to publicly embrace Beckett’s agenda.

      2. No, we blame the actual perpetrators of the crimes, that is either i) Keir Starmer & Co, or, ii) Sharon Graham & Co.

        The question was, which “& Co” did Frazer Lake originally belong to?

        Me, I’d say the “Starmer and Co.” but, truth is, they’re actually the same set of wreckers, a single centrist, entrerist entity, distinguishable only by which Labour Movement Organisation they obtain a salary from.

      3. My point is that if McCluskey and Beckett hadn’t stuck their oar into Turner’s campaign then in all likelihood he’d have won and Graham wouldn’t be the issue that you seem to think she is.

    2. Maria, Turner was endorsed by Starmer and in my opinion Graham, Coyne and Turner all ran in order to keep Beckett from winning. It was quite apparent from my regional meetings what was going down at the election. It was Howard Beckett that they wanted to stop not Turner.

      1. ….and yet surprise, surprise the oh so popular Beckett was the only one who failed to garner enough support to even run.

  2. Failed dismally running a children’s services dept??

    Fook me, under b.liar he’d probably be made children’s minister….Imagine the heights he’d reach if he was a labour mp in a smarmer govt?

    LCC’s (inadvertently) dodged bullet is unite’s misfortune.

  3. Yes, improved community awareness, better LCI local press coverage and Skwawxbox’s incisive support for LCI should increase its previous 33% vote-share. I’m told Jean Martin’s local campaigning is going well and should maximise this.

    Can anyone local tell us about the official Labour candidate and how their electioneering’s going?

  4. Interesting – Vox Media Ukraine carried out an opinion poll in Ukraine (and amongst ex-pat Ukrainians) in May-June 2023. Here are the headlines:
    “* 43% of respondents in Ukraine and 36% abroad disagreed with the statement “Nazi and/or neo-Nazi ideology is not widespread in Ukraine”;
    * 29% of respondents in Ukraine and 35% abroad disagreed with the statement “The Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine in 2013-2014 was NOT a coup”;
    *. 26% of respondents in Ukraine and 29% abroad agreed with the statement “Russia is fighting against the West/NATO in Ukraine”;
    * 25% of respondents in Ukraine and 29% abroad agreed with the statement “The West is using Ukraine for its own purposes in the war against Russia”;
    32% of respondents abroad agreed with the statement “Russian speakers are oppressed in Ukraine”.
    Seems that it is only in the West that there are no differences of view allowed.

    And, yes, I could provide a link. Here it is:


      Like you I recommend that others follow your link and read the whole of this interesting study.

      Their intro helps to put your above quote in context.
      “The information space of Ukrainians has long become a battlefield against Russian propaganda, which has only intensified in the conditions of a full-scale invasion. Russia systematically pollutes it with lies and manipulation, so it is critically important to be able to distinguish disinformation from other content. VoxCheck, together with the company CBR, conducted a survey to investigate the ability of Ukrainians to identify pro-Russian narratives and factors influencing this ability. As a result, it was possible to identify the topics most sensitive to Russian propaganda and how to counteract them.
      With the support of the International Renaissance Foundation, VoxCheck, together with the company CBR, investigated the public’s ability to distinguish Russian propaganda narratives.

      1. Yes. Vox Media Ukraine is a rather pro-Ukrainian-government organisation, so you would expect it to have the opinions you quote. They are opinions and we should neither dismiss them out of hand nor accept them as the incontravertible truth.
        What can not be questioned is that there is significant disagreement amongst those surveyed (and these are people who are “at the sharp end” of the situation). We should acknowledge that there are significant differences of opinion amongst Ukrainians rather than sit in the BVI, or wherever, posing as the fount of knowledge and the sole arbiter of truth.
        After all, it’s a poll – and you just love polls don’t you?

      2. By all means have a look at the site, bearing in mind that it has a very pro-Ukrainian-goverment spin and can’t be relied upon to present anywhere near an unbiased perspective.
        Given the data they present, even they ought to have to have to acknowledge that Ukraine is deeply divided in its perceptions of the conflict. Ask yourself whether or not they are willing to do so.
        We should all be looking for ways to end this conflict, none more so than Ukrainian media. Is that what they are doing?

  5. As an aside….

    Ayresome (Middlesbrough) council by-election result:

    IND: 36.1% (+9.6)
    LAB: 33.4% (-13.7)
    LDEM: 22.8% (+14.6)
    GRN: 3.6% (+3.6)
    CON: 3.4% (-14.8)
    IND: 0.6% (+0.6)

    Votes cast: 880

    Independent GAIN from Labour.

    18th August 2023

  6. Another aside…

    Marshalswick East and Jersey Farm (St Albans) council by-election result:

    LDEM: 46.0% (-4.5)
    CON: 39.3% (+7.6)
    GRN: 6.1% (-3.6)
    LAB: 4.9% (-3.1)
    IND: 3.7% (+3.7)

    Votes cast: 1,681

    Liberal Democrat HOLD.

    18th August 2023

  7. Lost one seat, share down 3% in the other – where the rags made a 7.6% gain.

    I wonder if the voters in both seats were just shown the policies, not the rosette colours? 🤔

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