On the afternoon of Saturday 14 April, Labour Party members from around NE Derbyshire gathered at the North Wingfield Community Resource Centre. The purpose of the meeting was to consider the future direction for the Labour Party.
Those present broke into three groups to discuss our values and philosophy, how we should organise, what we should stand for in terms of policy and priorities. What emerged was a series of statements and questions; an agenda for future discussion and ideas for further development. They are now presented for further analysis and comment; as an agenda for further development.
- Labour is a peoples’ party
- Labour’s purpose is to look after people
- Labour should work towards greater equality
- Labour should not be “Tory Lite”
- The NHS symbolises Labour values
- We want Labour politics to be a vocation rather than a career
- We believe society should be organised on a collective and cooperative basis
- We support the public service ethos
- Given the geography of NE Derbyshire, Labour should organise in Branches rooted in the distinct communities of our towns and villages
- There would be some value in holding All Member meetings two or three times a year
- We should build an on-line presence to engage with younger supporters/members and enable them to use their digital communication skills
- Labour has to be in office/power in order to get things done
- Labour should support local groups and provide the social glue in local communities
- Labour should be more than a vehicle for selecting candidates
- There is lots to do at local level
- What works in London may not work here.
- How do we translate local activity into delivering a Labour government?
- What is the answer to “what’s in it for me?” when voters ask?
- Despite the policy review, “policies” just seem to be announced from on high.
- How can we address the challenges imposed by globalisation?
- Has “political correctness” gone too far?
- Young people do not know what a Tory government really means.
- Stop apologising!
- Stop being defensive and begin setting the political agenda.
- Re-frame social democracy.
- Put the PLP back in touch with CLPs.
- Labour should prioritise council housing.
- Labour should restore real power to local councils.
- Labour Reduce expenditure on the military.
Those who took part, and in no particular order, were:
Jane Austen, Dave Ridley, Pam Hemsley, Julie Hill, Nigel Barker, Kenny Trodden, Cathy Goodyer, David Hancock, Mark Grayling, Jean Innes, Peter Innes, Geoff Butler, Alan Charles, Jordan Stapleton, Betty Hill, David Skinner, Harry Barnes, Jason Tomlinson, Harold Laws, Tracy Reader, Andy Reader, Steve Ramsdale, Mairi Ramsdale, Edwin Holmes, Barry Barnes, Michael Gordon, Kevin Gillott, Jill Brunt, Graham Baxter, Kevin Eansworth, Meg Ridley.
Many thanks to all.