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Left surge forward in Young Labour – but more at stake this weekend

For the past month, Young Labour members have been voting for their representatives on the youth section’s supposed ruling body – the Young Labour National Committee. When the ballots opened, I did some analysis of who could be considered left candidates, and who would be worth supporting. The results are now in for the regional reps – and among the contested positions, there have been significant gains for the left (see below).

The committee also includes six trade union representatives, already elected, and a number of positions to be elected at the Labour Youth conference next weekend:

CHAIR (elected at Labour Youth conference) – Kate Taylor is a city councillor in Plymouth, making history by being elected last year aged 18. Her manifesto calls for “a democratic Young Labour” including written policy motions at Young Labour conference.

NEC REP (elected at conference) – Olivia Blake is a post-graduate student at the University of Sheffield and vice-chair of her university’s Labour club. She is calling for all future Young Labour elections to take place via ‘one member one vote’ rather than conferences that are prone to packing and only accessible to some (see her piece on Left Futures today).

INTERNATIONAL OFFICER (elected at the conference) – Ben Murray is being supported by many on the left

ORDINARY REPS (2 places, at least one to be a woman, elected at the conference) – many on the left are supporting Dominic Curran, Left Futures associate editor and Warwick Labour activist. He has the backing of Next Generation Labour. Sophie Nash, a Unite activist from Bournemouth, is also being supported by some on the left.

The following elections took place for regional reps:

  • East Midlands: the right’s Greg East (82.9%) beat Christian Weaver (17.1%) – the right hold what is considered their strongest region in Young Labour terms.
  • East of England: the left’s Conrad Landin (30.9%) beat the right’s Tyron Wilson (26.3%), Ryan Austin (15.4%), Matthew Percy (14.9%), Emma Toal (8%) and Esther Akinnuwa (4.6%). A gain for the left.
  • London: in a polarised contest, the right’s Benjamin Butterworth (45.7%) beat the left’s Michael Chessum (41.6%). This is a gain for the right, although left activists will be comforted by the recent election of Hazel Nolan (also a trade union YLNC rep) as chair of London Young Labour. Also standing were Daisy Pinn (7.4%), Primesh Patel (2.4%, Vickram Grewal (1.5%) and Puneet Grewal (1.5%) – although none of these submitted manifesto statements.
  • North: in a close two-way contest, the left’s Siobhan Foy (51.7%) beat Katie Corrigan (48.3%), despite the latter having significantly more institutional backing. Left gain.
  • South East: the left’s Max Shanly (29%) beat the right’s Aled Jones (24.6%), alongside Jack Cousens (18.8%). Godfrey Atuahene Junior (16.9%), Jasmin Chohan (5.8%), Alex Denning (3.9%) and Ben Duncan-Duggal (1%). Left gain.
  • South West: the left candidate for chair, Kate Taylor (69.4%) beat Sophie Nash, also of the left (30.6%). Left gain.
  • Yorkshire: the left’s Michele Collins (33.1%) beat Jabran Hussain (29%), Ryan Jackson (19%), Ben Dilks (9.3%), Richard Price (4%), Mohammed Ali (3.2%) and Pride Bhekuzulu Siwela (2.4%). Left gain.

Among elected positions, five gains for the left, and one loss.

A number of regions elected their representatives unopposed. They are:

  • North West: Victoria Rigby
  • Wales: Catherine Rendle
  • West Midlands: Jeevan Jones
  • Scotland: Sophie MacDonald

The elected trade union reps are:

  • CWU: Ben Abrams
  • Unite: Alex Halligan
  • UCATT: Caroline Hill
  • GMB: Hazel Nolan
  • USDAW: Sachin Patel
  • UNISON: Mhairi Threlfall

4 Comments

  1. Jackie Walker says:

    Nice to see the the LRC making such a difference with youth!

  2. Craig Dawson says:

    “beat the right’s Katie Corrigan” must have missed something when was Katie the rights candidate?

  3. Joe Kirwin says:

    How is the North a gain for the Left. Katie Corrigan is a candidate of the left who spoke out against the establishment on many issues. Who decided she was a candidate of the right? Oh I see, because those evil right wing trade union branches backed her. Poorly researched journalism such as this is why the left can never get on the same page. (P.s I have nothing against Siobhan and think she will do a great job for the left on the National Committee )

  4. Oliver Gratton says:

    What possible basis can you have for claiming that Katie Corrigan was the candidate of the “right”? She was a great candidate who made up her own mind about the key issues and who, I am sure, will have a great role to play in the future. I wish Siobhan the best of luck and I’m sure she’ll do a great job but this sort of divisive, baseless article can only harm the party.

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