Labour Conference 2019 Day 1 – Delegate Report

Reigate CLP Following Corbyn!
Reigate CLP Following Corbyn!

From our fantastic delegates, Susan and Leon for their report on the first day!

 

We attended the Brexit Seminar with Kier Starmer – this was a great debate raising issues about what Labour’s approach to a referendum should be and how, if we campaign to remain, we can unite with leave voters and focus on the underlying issues that led to leave voters voting leave.

 

Speeches:

 

Nancy Platts, leader of Brighton & Hove Council, gave an inspiring speech about the progress being made in B&H and their commitments to climate change and becoming carbon neutral as a city, amongst many other strong Labour policies.

 

Conference paid tribute to lost Labour comrades

 

Jennie Formby, General Secretary, addressed the conference.  Highlights of her speech were the danger of a Boris: Trump trade deal and reversing the privatisation of the NHS.  She was presented with flowers by JC as a recognition of all she has done while battling cancer.

 

Party Chair, Ian Lavery, spoke of Labour gaining the highest vote share in 2017 since 1945.  We cannot pretend, however, that leaving the EU will solve issues of poverty.   He is encouraging everyone to sign up to vote and to encourage others, using:  bythemay.org.uk/signup

 

Treasurers Report – Labour remains debt-free and has not asked for any loans of any kind (contrary to some reports).  We have £2million in an election chest which ring-fenced for GE campaigning.  There was anger from the floor with BP, Heathrow and others being sponsors of the conference.  This was noted by the Treasurer.

 

Dawn Butler gave a rousing speech about our democracy being under threat.  We must unite against Johnson (being a Johnson – in her words!!) and his need to hold power at all costs.  She referenced back to Jo Cox and the danger of the far-right and the divisions growing in our communities.  Policies on ending the stigma of menopause and training managers to understand and support women at this time and to consider sickness absence based on individual circumstances.

 

There was a debate on rule changes (that took a loooong time!) The rule changes that were supported by the NEC passed; many rule changes put forward by CLPs that weren’t supported by the NEC were withdrawn; those that weren’t withdrawn did not pass.

 

Priority ballots were taken to reduce the 55 motions but forward to be debated at the conference to 20.  The 20 motions that passed for debate are:

 

Green New Deal

Insourcing

Homelessness

Working Hours

NHS

Employment Rights

High Streets

Corporate Governance

Industrial Strategy

Royal Mail

Housing

Local authority cuts

Schools

Brexit

Social care

Mental Health

Ethical Foreign Policy

Yemen

Good Friday Agreement

Immigration

 

It was a great first day at conference that ended with a reception hosted by Labour South East where we got to hear from and meet Angela Rayner, Jon Ashworth, Emily Thornberry and Lloyd Russell-Moyle We also had a great chat with Kier Starmer at the end of the evening referring back to his Brexit Seminar and his time at Reigate Grammar.

 

Thanks all

Susan and Leon

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