Give us back our Democracy

by Hannah F, and other new Labour members

Give us back our Democracy

by Hannah F, and other new Labour members

Labour Party members take action against their Party for denying their democratic right to vote in the forthcoming Leadership election.

Funded
on 28th July 2016
£96,535
pledged by 5982 people

Labour Party members take action against their Party for denying their democratic right to vote in the forthcoming Leadership election.

UPDATE – 23 August 2016


Our crowdfunding has now ended, and we're just a little short of the 100k we were hoping for to cover Labour's legal fees as well as our own, but I just wanted to say a massive thank you to all of you for the support we've seen over the last month or so. We really couldn't have done it without you all donating, sharing, and emailing us messages of support. 


Thank you!

<3

Who are we

We, a collection of Labour members, who have joined the Party since 12 January 2016, are calling on the Party to reconsider its decision to deny new members a vote in the forthcoming leadership election. We feel let down and confused as to why the Party would disenfranchise us and over 130,000 other members in this way.

Last week, the Labour Party's National Executive Committee decided to retroactively disenfranchise all Labour members by changing the rules to exclude any members who joined since 12 January 2016 from voting in the forthcoming leadership election.

When we joined the Party, the website said, “As a member, you’ll be a key part of the team. You’ll be eligible to vote in leadership elections.”

Not only can we not vote in this election according to the current procedures but we do not feel like a valued part of the Labour team.

The case

We have called on the Party to reconsider its decision, but it has not proven forthcoming. We believe the only way we can retrieve our rights is by taking the Party to court.

Harrison Grant Solicitors have issued proceedings on our behalf and we hope it will be heard very soon. 

To cover our potential legal fees, we have set up a crowdfunding page. We are not wealthy people and call on all those concerned by democracy in the Labour Party to help us take on this battle for the rights of the 130,000 excluded members. Our complaint is the same as that of the other thousands of new members so if we win, then the right will be won for all.

We joined the Labour Party as we are committed to helping it to become the Party which can win elections and transform society, but that cannot happen without the full involvement of its members. 


About the claimant

Hi, I'm Hannah! I'm 27 and live in Leamington Spa with my boyfriend and our 5 cats. As you can probably tell, I quite like cats... I also like music (playing and listening) and playing board games.

I have always been a Labour voter, but until last year I'd grown quite disillusioned with politics - it seemed to be a choice between very similar parties, none of whom particularly spoke to me (or for me!). Last year, however, that all changed with Jeremy Corbyn and his uncompromising support for equality and fairness. I wasn't sure if he would win - the last few years have shown that many of those in Labour are convinced that the path to power is to emulate the policies of the party currently in power - but I was pleasantly surprised when Corbyn won the leadership election (with my help as a registered supporter).

Fast forward 9 months or so and we come to the EU Referendum. During Corbyn's leadership I have watched Labour closely, watched how the media misrepresent Corbyn and how some Labour MPs undermine him. But it wasn't until the Brexit vote and the events following it that I felt I had to join the Labour Party to try and ensure that it continued to represent not just my views, but the views of anyone else who felt unrepresented and unserved by politics previously.

So now, we are here - the National Executive Committee has decided to retroactively disenfranchise all Labour members who joined after the middle of January. Regardless of who you support in the leadership contest, or whether you are even a Labour member, I am sure you will agree that it is incredibly unfair to all the members, around 130,000 of them, who joined since 12 January to have their voting rights taken away. And perhaps the worst bit is that you can join after that date and vote - you just have to pay £25 - an 8-fold increase over the previous Registered Supporter fee. Labour is supposed to represent and work for the benefit of the most vulnerable among us, but this fee essentially prices out those who need Labour the most.

I am going to pay my £25 to ensure I can vote. I urge all of you who can to do so too. Together we can build a party that is open, welcoming and represents the real interests of working people.

Fast facts

  • The National Executive Committee of the Labour Party has decided to exclude members of the party who joined after January 12th 2016 from voting in the forthcoming leadership election. 
  • That means 130,000 dedicated members of the Labour Party are being disenfranchised.
  • Harrison Grant, a firm of solicitors, has agreed to take on our case.

Get updates about this case

Subscribe to receive email updates from the case owner on the latest news about the case.

Be a promoter

Your share on Facebook could raise £26 for the case

I'll share on Facebook

Thank You!

Aug. 23, 2016

Our crowdfunding has now ended, and we're just a little short of the 100k we were hoping for to cover Labour's legal fees as well as our own, but I just wanted to say a massive thank you to all of you for the support we've seen over the last month or so. We really couldn't have done it without you all donating, sharing, and emailing us messages of support. 

Thank you!

<3

Case Update

Aug. 14, 2016

Hi all,

This has been an odd, emotional-rollercoaster of a week for us all. Thank you for supporting us through this, it's been a huge help to see how many of you care deeply about this unfair and unjust situation.

Unfortunately, given the costs involved in pursuing the case further, we have taken the decision that this is where this particular legal case has to stop. But the case wasn't in vain - although we didn't succeed in reclaiming votes for the 130,000 disenfranchised members, we did win in the High Court, exposing facts which have spurred important conversations about the role of the Labour Party membership and the NEC.

We won't be raising the 100,000 target any higher, this should cover the costs we were ordered to pay (around 80,000) plus our own legal fees (we have been very lucky and received a combination of reduced fees and no fees for the work we've had done).

Again, thank you all so much for your support - and the fight for justice isn't over yet, although this particular stage of it is over. The 5 of us are going to stay in the Party and work to try and change things for the better within the Party's structure itself. We'd really appreciate it if you would join us in that - either as members already, as potential members, or as supporters.

Hannah

x

We won, but the fight isn't over yet!

Aug. 8, 2016

We got the decision this morning, and as you might have seen on the news - we won!


However, the Labour Party is appealing the decision. The case will probably be heard on Thursday, and we'll need to prepare again for a case so please keep sharing this page and donate if you can spare any more! 


Thanks so much for all your support so far! :)

Case will be heard in the Royal Courts of Justice on 4th August

Aug. 1, 2016

We are happy to let you know that the case will be heard in the Royal Courts of Justice on 4th August. 

Since it seems we're definitely going to have to go to court (rather than being able to settle outside of it) we've increased our stretch target to £40,000 in order to cover all legal fees.

In order to help us reach our new target we are asking everyone, if they can, to:

  • Donate 
  • Tweet: "Labour members' legal action against withdrawal of right to vote will be heard on Aug 4th. Support them here: bit.ly/right_2_vote"
  • Share the link with friends: "Dear Friends, Please donate to 'Give us back our Democracy' to challenge the Labour Party National Executive Committee's decision to exclude members who joined after January 12th from voting in the upcoming leadership election. Support them here: bit.ly/right_2_vote. The case will be heard in the Royal Courts of Justice on 4th August. Donate to fight for Labour Party democracy."

By doing this you are helping to defend the rights of those 130,000+ members who have been disenfranchised in this election, and we're very grateful for all and any assistance you can provide!

Funded

July 28, 2016

We hit our first target!

    There are no public comments on this case page.