Motions for Labour Party conference, 2021

Build Back Fairer and Global Climate Justice motions backed by Momentum Internationalists were prioritised by Momentum (in its March 2021 “policy primary”) for submission to Labour Party conference September 2021.

The deadline for CLPs to submit motions for Labour Party conference was 13 September 2021. Many CLPs decided their motions in July. Momentum Internationalists submitted a number of motions to Momentum’s “policy primary” in March 2021. Two were voted for as Momentum priorities: Build Back Fairer, and Global Climate Justice.

The Momentum priorities are online here:

We list the Momentum Internationalists motions below, Build Back Fairer and Global Climate Justice first.

Title: Build back fairer: attack poverty and inequality

The Marmot report “Build Back Fairer” says: “mismanagement during the pandemic, and the unequal way the pandemic has struck, is of a piece with what happened… in the decade from 2010… enduring social and economic inequalities… mean that public health was threatened before and during the pandemic and will be after.”

The Resolution Foundation and Wealth Tax Commission estimate that concentration of wealth in the hands of the super-rich is even worse than previously thought – by £800bn! We need to take back wealth, with a wealth tax, increased corporation tax, capital gains tax and taxing very high incomes; and taking banking and finance into democratic public ownership.

We commit to “building back fairer”, campaigning for all with targeted action to increase racial, ethnic, gender, class and economic equality, campaigning for and implementing:

● Benefits increased to a liveable level. £260pw Universal Credit (demanded by the TUC).

● Extension and strengthening of furlough and self-employment schemes.

● Increase the minimum wage to £12ph, scrapping exemptions and differentials. Action to increase wages; substantial increases for public-sector workers.

● The right to isolate on full pay; improved sick pay for all, 100% of wages for all sickness periods.

● Repeal of all anti-union laws.

● Banning of zero-hours contracts.

● Reversal of all cuts since 2010, increased funding.

● Comprehensive reversal of privatisation and outsourcing; full public ownership of health and social care.

● Abolition of ‘No Recourse to Public Funds’.

● Building at least 100,000 council homes a year.

● Creation of millions of secure, well-paid, public jobs in services and green industry.

Submitted by: North East Momentum, Stevenage Momentum and Southampton Momentum

Title: Global climate justice

Conference notes:

● We must keep global temperature rises below 1.5°C.

● The communities hit hardest by climate change contributed least to the problem.

● The UK spends billions of pounds per year on fossil fuel subsidies and is a key jurisdiction for the enforcement of globally accrued debt.

Conference believes:

● Labour should make the case for rapid decarbonisation by 2030.

● The cost of decarbonisation must be borne by the rich.

● Debt cancellation is essential to achieve climate justice.

Conference resolves to support:

● Cancellation of all low-income country debt held by UK institutions; legislation to prevent UK courts prosecuting countries stopping debt payments.

● Immediately halting all fossil fuel subsidies, placing the money in a Just Transition fund. Sanctions on big polluters; incentives to rapidly reduce reliance on fossil fuels.

● Phase out of high-carbon industries with a just transition and support workers organising with unions and taking action to decarbonise industries and the global supply chain, while campaigning and educating for a Socialist Green New Deal

● All future stimulus and bailout eligibility linked to climate action and a just transition for workers.

● Bringing the banking and financial system into democratic public control to fund a just transition; regulating private banking and finance for its climate impact.

● Delisting of companies failing to protect the environment and uphold human rights in the global supply chain.

● Linking internationally with indigenous groups, trade unions and groups resisting ecological assault.

● Legal recognition of climate refugees’ right to asylum.

Title: China, Hong Kong and the Uyghurs: solidarity, peace, democracy and liberation

Conference notes:

● Uyghurs and other majority-Muslim peoples in Xinjiang/East Turkestan suffer genocidal persecution including racist surveillance; political, cultural and religious

repression; forced contraception and sterilisation; forced labour in global corporate supply chains; children removed from families; and concentration camps.

● A violent, corporate-backed crackdown has attacked Hong Kong’s movement for democracy and civil liberties. Independent unions like the HKCTU are surging but under assault. British colonial-era anti-union and anti-democratic laws facilitate this.

● Throughout China, worker exploitation is rampant. Wealth inequality approaches US levels. Independent unions and protests are suppressed while corporations and state bureaucrats profit. But workers, women, minorities and dissidents continue to resist.

Conference believes:

● Socialism means political and economic democracy. Despite pretences, China’s authoritarian state represents neither.

Conference resolves that Labour will:

● Build solidarity with independent labour, democratic and liberatory movements, protests and strikes in China.

● Resist hijacking of this cause by nationalists and hawks promoting anti-Chinese racism, superpower rivalry, trade wars and militarisation.

● Support freedom and human rights for the indigenous peoples of Xinjiang/East Turkestan and Tibet, and their right to democratically determine their futures.

● Support universal suffrage for Hong Kong, release of political prisoners and repeal of the National Security Law.

● Propose Magnitsky sanctions against officials involved in these abuses;

● Support protests and worker action against businesses complicit in these abuses;

● Propose laws requiring big businesses to transparently audit supply chains to source worldwide, and cut ties to rights abuses.

● Welcome unconditionally all refugees who seek sanctuary here from tyranny and persecution.

Submitted by Uyghur Solidarity Campaign

Title: Migrants welcome: end deportations and the racist Hostile Environment

Covid-19 has underlined how Hostile Environment policies hurt us all. Excluded from social and medical support, migrants have been left hyper-vulnerable to employers. Many EU citizens are falling through gaps in the Settled Status scheme.

The Stansted 15’s exoneration, appalling conditions at Napier Barracks, deaths in the Channel and closing of safe routes for child refugees highlight the cruelty of Tory migration policy. The Windrush Lessons Learned review has been ignored by the government.

Attacks on migrants are attacks on the labour movement. Making migrant workers precarious diminishes our power to unionise and fight back. Labour must reject divisive “good migrant/bad migrant” narratives and oppose all legislation that undermines migrants’ rights.

Conference resolves that Labour will work at all government levels, and campaign at the grassroots, to:

● Re-enter Europe’s free movement area, and pursue free movement with other countries, including in all future trade deals.

● Reject immigration systems based on migrants’ incomes, savings or utility to employers;

● Abolish “no recourse to public funds”, minimum income requirements, and all Hostile Environment policies including restrictions on NHS access.

● Introduce an easy process for all UK residents to gain permanent residency with equal rights.

● Introduce equal voting rights for all UK residents.

● Guarantee safe routes for asylum seekers and rights to family reunion, work and social security.

● End all immigration raids, detention and deportation, especially childhood-arrival deportations and racist “double sentencing”.

● Replace Settled Status with an automatic Right to Stay.

● Support workers who refuse to implement deportations or Hostile Environment Measures.

Submitted by: Labour Campaign for Free Movement, Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants, Momentum Stevenage, Momentum Oxfordshire, Momentum Watford, Three Rivers and Hertsmere

Title: Unshackling workers from draconian anti-trade union laws

The pandemic has amplified the need for workers to guarantee their safety and working conditions. Draconian cuts and lack of investment in public services have undermined resilience and caused workers to be further exposed to the effects of the ‘free’ market.

Waves of job cuts, attacks on terms and conditions (e.g., “fire and rehire”) and plans to scrap sectoral collective bargaining, including in the fire and rescue service, have continued throughout this crisis.

Conference notes TUC policy that workers should be: “represented by an independent union; strike/take industrial action by a process, at a time, and for demands of their own choosing, including in solidarity with any other workers, and for broader social and political goals; and picket freely”.

Conference reaffirms the commitment to repealing all anti-union laws to ensure that workers have power in their workplaces.

This commitment includes repealing anti-strike laws, such as the ban on striking in solidarity with other workers or over political issues – an affront to democracy. These laws prevent workers from taking action directly over issues such as climate change, equality issues, and the NHS.

Conference denounces the Tories’ plan to impose new restrictions on transport workers through a “minimum service requirement”- it seems likely they will extend this to other groups of key workers.

Conference resolves that the party will actively drive trade union membership amongst all party members, campaign for the repeal of all anti-trade union laws, and that the next Labour government will repeal all anti-trade union laws.

Submitted by The Fire Brigades Union, Southampton Momentum, Brent Momentum and Free Our Unions

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