UNISON backs Jeremy Corbyn for Labour Party leader

58 per cent of Labour registered members support Corbyn

 

UNISON has endorsed Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign to remain leader of the Labour Party, following an online consultation in which he won 58 per cent support among Labour registered members.

‘Jeremy Corbyn retains the backing of a majority of UNISON’s Labour supporting members,’ commented general secretary Dave Prentis. ‘That’s why the committee supported his nomination again.’

He continued:

“However, a significant minority backed Owen Smith. Their views will always be respected in our union- that’s our proud tradition. 

“It’s healthy for people to hold alternative views on the future direction of the party. What’s toxic though is for abuse, threats and aggressive language to be considered acceptable- or the norm.

“Labour is in danger of becoming the new ‘nasty party’ if this behaviour continues unchecked. There’s no place in the party for witch hunts against MPs, councillors and party staff. 

“The decent hard-working people we represent don’t want a party riven by infighting. They want a united opposition that stands up for public services which are facing intolerable pressures.” 

UNISON is one of the country’s largest union’s, representing 1.3 million public service workers. 30,000 are affiliated supporters of the Labour Party, and 20,190 participated in the leadership consultation.

There was also discussion of the issue within local branches.

Corbyn also has the support of the country’s biggest union, Unite, which based its endorsement on motions in support of the leader at its annual conference, rather than a formal consultation.

GMB was the only one of the big unions to hold a consultative ballot of members, which Owen Smith won with 60 per cent.

Corbyn has now been endorsed by eight affiliated unions, and Smith by four.

Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.