Labour Representation Committee

A movement formed by trade unionists and socialists to secure a voice for socialists within the Labour Party, the unions, and Parliament.

Scottish LRC set up: never mind the quality, feel the width!

Author: 

Dale Street

That just about sums up much of the sentiments expressed at the Saturday 28 February inaugural meeting of the Scottish Labour Representation Committee, which also doubled up as the formal launch of the Scottish People’s Charter.

The Scottish People’s Charter (SPC) is the Scottish version of the People’s Charter (PC), currently being touted round sections of the trade union movement as the policy statement which should be adopted in response to the current economic crisis.

Inaugural meeting of the Scottish Labour Representation Committee

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Matt Wrack: "Build unity around demands"

Author: 

Matt Wrack

Matt Wrack is general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU). He spoke to Martin Thomas at the Labour Representation Committee conference on 15 November.

The main policies need to be based around defence of the working class - rejection of privatisation, defence of jobs and wages. We need to put on the agenda a genuine nationalisation of the banks and financial institutions.

Matt Wrack is general secretary of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU). He spoke to Martin Thomas at the Labour Representation Committee conference on 15 November.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Martin Mayer: "The unions haven't been doing so badly"

Author: 

Martin Mayer

Martin Mayer is chair of the TGWU Broad Left. He spoke to Martin Thomas at the Labour Representation Committee conference on 15 November.

Martin Mayer is chair of the TGWU Broad Left. He spoke to Martin Thomas at the Labour Representation Committee conference on 15 November.

Trade Unions: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Talking about workers' candidates

Author: 

Colin Foster

On 15 November the Labour Representation Committee meets for its annual conference. The rail union RMT has called a cross-union conference on working-class political representation for 10 January 2009.

And Nottinghamshire Trades Council is planning a local trade unionists' meeting on workers’ representation in February 2009. East Midlands RMT branch is involved in this plan, which, like the calling of the 10 January conference, is in line with a resolution carried at the RMT’s conference in June 2008.

On 15 November the Labour Representation Committee meets for its annual conference. The rail union RMT has called a cross-union conference on working-class political representation for 10 January 2009.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Motion to the Labour Representation Committee conference

The motion below has been submitted to the 15 November conference of the Labour Representation Committee by the AWL, and is also being proposed in other organisations affiliated to the LRC.

The LRC notes the following decision by the 2008 AGM of the rail union RMT, affiliate of the LRC:

A motion submitted to the 15 November conference of the Labour Representation Committee by the AWL calls for the LRC to broaden its work into building a wider workers' representation movement.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Matt Wrack: we need a workers’ party

Author: 

Bruce Robinson

Report from The Convention of the Left, meeting in Manchester in parallel to Labour’s conference (20-24 September).

Though the organisers had successfully argued against a debate on links between the unions and Labour, the question of political perspectives for the unions ran through many of the contributions to the trade union session.

Report from The Convention of the Left, meeting in Manchester in parallel to Labour’s conference (20-24 September).

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Get back to first principles

Author: 

Andrew Fisher

The left in Britain is in crisis. Recent years have seen the tensions caused by this crisis tear through the Socialist Alliance, the Scottish Socialist Party and Respect. Other projects have been even less successful.

Within the Labour Party orbit, all left organisations are facing tensions between the Party and the movement — often to be found diametrically opposed. Even the amorphous quasi-left Compass grouping has divided recently.

Andrew Fisher, Labour Representation Committee (LRC) National Committee contributes to the discussion on working class political representation started by Chris Ford in the last issue of Solidarity.

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

For working-class opposition to both bosses’ parties

Author: 

Chris Ford

A discussion article by Chris Ford (AWL and LRC National Committee) on the current crisis of workers’ representation.

A discussion article by Chris Ford (AWL and LRC National Committee) on the current crisis of workers’ representation.

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Motions to Socialist Youth Network conference

AWL members will be attending the 2008 conference of the Socialist Youth Network (youth section of the Labour Representation Committee) and proposing the following motions. For more information, to come with us to the event or to support one or more of our motions, email chrisjmarks@hotmail.com

The conference is at University of London Union, 10-4pm, Saturday 29 March.

Fight to restore and extend working-class political representation

AWL members will be attending the 2008 conference of the Socialist Youth Network (youth section of the Labour Representation Committee) and proposing a number of motions.

Issues and Campaigns: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Motion for RMT AGM on the Labour Representation Committee

This AGM notes the decision of Labour Party affiliated TUs and CLPs to disenfranchise themselves at the Bournemouth conference, the failure of John McDonnell to get on the ballot paper for Labour Party leader and the collapse of the SSP. We believe that this has brought our class to a position of crisis regarding political representation.

Motion for RMT AGM on the Labour Representation Committee

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Crisis of workers' representation won't be resolved by "spontaneous combustion"

Author: 

Chris Ford

Just over fifty people attended the launch meeting of the local Labour Representation Committee in Hackney, East London, on Wednesday 27 February.

The meeting was the latest in a string of successful meetings in Hackney, with packed events over the privatisation of the East London Line, John McDonnell’s challenge for the Labour leadership, and opposition to the war in Iraq, and more recently over 100 wishing to oppose the Councils so-called Estate Regeneration Programme.

Hackney leftists debate the crisis of working-class representation: relying on "spontaneous combustion" is not the answer

Trade Unions: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Draft motion on the LRC for unions not affiliated to the Labour Party

Conference believes that it is important for unions to have a political voice.

Conference notes with concern the Labour Party's decision at its 2007 conference to ban political motions from unions and Constituency Labour Parties.

Conference notes that unions concerned to promote working-class political representation have affiliated to the Labour Representation Committee. LRC affiliates include both unions not affiliated to the Labour Party, such as RMT and FBU, and unions affiliated to it, such as CWU, ASLEF, the Bakers' Union, and the NUM.

Draft motion on the LRC for unions not affiliated to the Labour Party

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

The future of the left?

Around 70 people heared John McDonnell speak at a Scottish Campaign for Socialism meeting in Glasgow on 2 February.

Speaking on “The Future of the Left” McDonnell’s starting point was that the current economic crisis was a vindication of Marx’s analysis of the nature of capitalism. But the Labour Party, despite the role played in it historically by socialists and revolutionaries, was now dominated by the forces of neo-liberalism. Any opportunity for the Party’s rank-and-file membership and affiliated trade unions to influence Party policy had been largely closed down.

Around 70 people heared John McDonnell speak at a Scottish Campaign for Socialism meeting in Glasgow on 2 February.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

An axis for unifying the left

Extracts from an AWL leaflet distributed at a regional meeting of the National Shop Stewards Network, held in Glasgow on 1 December.

“In backing the Labour Party rule changes (to ban unions and CLPs from submitting motions to annual Labour Party conference), union leaders have effectively disenfranchised millions of trade unionists who remain organisationally affiliated to the Labour Party.

Trade Unions: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Labour Representation Committee conference: a missed opportunity

Author: 

Chris Ford

"The LRC meets at a time when socialists within the Labour Party, trade unions, left groups and many progressive campaigns are being forced to face up to a number of hard truths in reassessing their future", read the National Committee statement to the Labour Representation conference on 17 November.

Around 250 attended the conference, slightly down on last year. The theme of the conference was Next Steps for the Left.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

LRC balks at new start, but debate will go on

Author: 

Chris Ford

“The LRC meets at a time when socialists within the Labour Party, trade unions, left groups and many progressive campaigns are being forced to face up to a number of hard truths in reassessing their future”, read the National Committee statement to the Labour Representation conference on 17 November

Around 250 attended the conference, slightly down on last year. The theme of the conference was Next Steps for the Left.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

LRC and the Recomposition of the Left

Leaflet for Labour Representation Committee conference, 17 November 2007. "The LRC needs to make itself the axis for a recomposition of the left... a new Workers' Representation Committee... an urgent appeal for socialist unity". Read the rest by downloading the attachment, below.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Labour and union left debate after Bournemouth

Author: 

Rhodri Evans

A "relaunch to achieve workers’ representation” — that is what supporters of Solidarity will be arguing at the conference of the Labour Representation Committee on 17 November.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Motions to LRC conference 17 November 2007

Author: 

Martin Thomas

Below are motions drafted by AWL members and supporters of the paper Solidarity for the Labour Representation Committee conference coming up on 17 November. Several of the motions deliberately overlap with each other in content, so that if some fail to get the support of bodies affiliated to the LRC, or fail to get that in good time, then not all the content is lost.

A. Re-launch to achieve Workers' Representation

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Turn to build Trades Councils

Author: 

Martin Thomas

In response to Bournemouth, we should initiate a long-term consistent campaign to build or revive Trades Councils as political organs of the labour movement.

Turn to build Trades Councils

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

LRC Conference: We need a Workers' Representation Committee

Author: 

Chris Ford

The national conference of the Labour Representation Committee on 17 November will provide an opportunity for socialist and trade unionists who want turn the tide of retrogression in the labour movement.

Marxist Theory and History: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Labour left unfocused

Author: 

Clifford Brown

Party should be “committed to socialist policies” now lacks any means by which it might be carried through. The only practical suggestion was that, given the dramatic loss in Labour Party membership, it was now much easier for the left to take over moribund constituency parties (and presumably the smaller they get, the better, as it then becomes even easier).

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Unions vote for political hara-kari: LRC responds

On 23 September the Labour Party conference in Bournemouth voted to ban unions and local Labour Parties from putting motions on current political issues to any future Labour Party conference.

On 23 September the Labour Party conference in Bournemouth voted to ban unions and local Labour Parties from putting motions on current political issues to any future Labour Party conference.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Socialist Youth Network conference: a start

By a SYN executive member

At last year's Labour Representation Committee conference, a small group of young people met to discuss setting up an LRC youth organisation. Out of this came the Socialist Youth Network, which, after a number of planning meetings, held its first conference at University of London Union on 13 January.

Issues and Campaigns: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Labour, Marx and 21st century socialism: an interview with John McDonnell

David Broder, Chris Ford and Mladen Jakopovich spoke to John McDonnell about his campaign for the Labour leadership as well as what socialism means to him.

What led to your decision to stand for the Labour leadership?

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Stop Blair and Brown: An appeal to the unions

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

There are times when politics is in flux, when resolute action, or, alternatively, gutless inaction, shapes the future. Now is such a time.

Tony Blair’s “retirement agenda”, what he wants to do in his last period as prime minister, is thoroughly reactionary.

He wants to complete the destruction of the National Health Service which Thatcher began 25 years ago.

Trade Unions: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Will the Labour left challenge Brown?

By Colin Foster

IT is eighteen years now since the last open and direct challenge to the ever-more-right-wing leadership in the Labour Party. We have paid a very high price - in lack of overall political perspective for struggles on different issues, in demobilisation of activists, and in the growth among the general public of the idea that all politics is a waste of time — for those 18 years of deference.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

Socialists challenge the Blair-Brown show

Edited extracts from a statement issued by Labour Party socialists after the local council elections...

“A string of policies have turned our own supporters against us. From the Education Bill, privatisation of public services, the cuts in the NHS to the war in Iraq, we’ve alienated our natural supporters.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Publications: 

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