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.

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3 Responses to “UNISON backs Jeremy Corbyn for Labour Party leader”

  1. Suzanne Stephenson

    Still got to get the digs in, even though 58% of the members who voted supported Corbyn. “There’s no place in the party for witch hunts against MPs, councillors and party staff.” So glad I’m no longer a Unison member. Dave, would you also agree there is no place in the party for witch-hunts against members of the party who actually pay their subs and do the work of getting MPs elected, and who don’t deserve to be reviled as “rabble”, “deluded Leninists”, “Trotskyist entryists”, “thugs” and “bullies”?

  2. Tim Bee

    Suzanne – I don’t think this is necessarily a dig at any particular faction. It’s a call for unity and respect. There’s been bad behaviour from all sides and it doesn’t do anyone any good (except the Tories and the Press). I am going to vote for Owen, but close friends and family are supporting Jeremy. We have to remember we’re all on the same side ultimately.

  3. Louise Branch

    Speaking as a Unison member I am totally supportive of Dave’s statement -it’s a shame the party leadership can’t be equally as unequivocal in speaking out against all form of abuse within the party.

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