A call to reinstate Marc Wadsworth

Model motion calling for Marc Wadsworth’s reinstatement

Jewish Voice for Labour’s AGM on April 29 welcomed as a guest Marc Wadsworth, who had been expelled from the Labour Party two days earlier, and passed a resolution calling for his reinstatement and for urgent reform of the flawed procedures that permitted his unjust treatment.

Now that the local elections are over, we urge activists in Labour Party, Momentum and trade union organisations to use the model motion below as part of a campaign to overturn Marc’s expulsion, clear his name and to defend Jackie Walker and others earmarked for the next phase in the right-wing purge.

The motion is intended as part of an essential fightback against the attacks on left-wing activists which began as soon as Jeremy Corbyn was first elected party leader, targeting Corbyn supporters, including Jews, with unjust allegations of antisemitism. (It goes without saying that we do not tolerate genuine hostility towards Jews, nor any other minority group.)

Victimising people of colour such as Marc and Jackie is divisive and dangerous and poses a risk to the real struggle against racial intolerance and bigotry.

We must also resist attempts to prevent the Corbyn leadership from talking to “the wrong kind of Jews”. Jewish Voice for Labour has a vital role to play in helping to formulate plans for dealing with antisemitism allegations and for tackling any antisemitic attitudes that may be present among party members.

For background to Marc Wadsworth’s case see Some responses to the expulsion of Marc Wadsworth and David Rosenberg on the Wadsworth show trial.

Motion

This branch notes that:

  • Marc Wadsworth, a leading Black antiracist activist, was expelled from the Labour Party – with no right of appeal – on April 27, 2018, charged with bringing the Party into disrepute;
  • his expulsion followed 22 months of suspension from membership;
  • his expulsion was not for antisemitism, despite continuous prejudicial media coverage falsely accusing him of antisemitic abuse at the media launch of the Chakrabarti Report on June 30, 2016.

This branch believes:

  • that the party has indeed been brought into disrepute, not by Marc Wadsworth’s non-abusive remark at the Report launch, but by the actions of PLP members publicly denouncing him as an antisemite; by the adherence of the entrenched party bureaucracy to a disciplinary system which was not fit for purpose; and by its failure to put in place a system conforming with principles of natural justice, which should be automatic in any labour movement organisation.

This branch therefore:

  • supports Marc Wadsworth’s campaign to clear his name of the antisemitism slur and for reinstatement as a member of the Labour Party;
  • calls on the new General Secretary to:

*   speedily implement Chakrabarti’s recommendations designed to reform flawed party rules and structures to ensure prompt, fair and transparent handling of disciplinary complaints against members, with right of appeal and including presumption of innocence and fact-based judgements that do not rely on guilt by association; and

*   pause disciplinary hearings until a process based on natural justice for all parties to a dispute has been established.

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Comments (1)

  • Richard Kuper says:

    https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/03/unite-conference-accepts-wadsworth-issue-onto-debate-agenda/

    Unite conference accepts Wadsworth issue onto debate agenda

    SKWAWKBOX 03/07/2018

    Against expectations, the required forty-nine delegates have supported a move to include the issue of veteran black activist Marc Wadsworth for debate at the Unite union’s conference taking place now in Brighton. The item has been accepted by the conference’s Standing Orders Committee onto the conference agenda.

    Wadsworth was recently expelled by the Labour Party on disrepute charges after criticising MP Ruth Smeeth at the launch of the Chakrabarti Report in 2016. Smeeth claimed the criticism was antisemitic, but video of the exchange does not appear to support the claim. Wadsworth was not expelled for antisemitism, in spite of media reports and politicians’ statements to the contrary.

    Last week the RMT rail union, which is supportive of but not affiliated to Labour, voted to support Wadsworth’s reinstatement at its own annual gathering. Wadsworth has received support from a considerable number of local Labour Party units and is crowdfunding to support a legal challenge to the ruling.

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