Motion on the expulsion of Marc Wadsworth from the Labour Party, passed on May 14 2018
1. Ecclesall branch (Hallam Sheffield CLP) notes that
- On April 27 2018 Marc Wadsworth was expelled from the Labour Party for “bringing the party into disrepute”.
- Ruth Smeeth MP claimed that, at the launch of the Charkrabarti report in June 2016, Marc Wadsworth was being anti-Semitic by criticising her for “working hand in hand” with a reporter from the Daily Telegraph, who had passed a press release to her.
- Ruth Smeeth stated at the expulsion hearing that she “felt” Marc Wadsworth was being anti-Semitic. That was sufficient for Labour’s National Constitutional Committee (NCC) to uphold this charge.
- Marc Wadsworth is a veteran anti-racist campaigner. As chair of the Labour Party Black Sections (1986-1988), he helped four of its members to get elected as MPs in 1987. He founded the Anti-Racist Alliance in 1991 and helped the parents of Stephen Lawrence set up their campaign for justice and introduced them to Nelson Mandela.
- Ecclesall branch believes that:
- Nothing that Marc Wadsworth did or said at the launch of the Chakrabarti report was even vaguely anti-Semitic.
- The fact that somebody “feels” they have experienced anti-Semitism, or any other form of prejudice, is not enough. The NCC’s decision not to require any proof or evidence sets a dangerous precedent for the acceptance of politically motivated allegations.
- Chris Williamson MP was right to call thedecision to expel Marc Wadsworth “perverse”. He was also right to criticise the “weaponisation of anti-Semitism for political ends”, namely the purging or muzzling of members who are critical of Israeli government policies and actions.
- Despite the growing number of fallacious allegations of anti-Semitism (by a group of anti-Corbyn MPs in cooperation with the mainstream media) the number of cases of anti-Semitism among Labour Party members upheld remains tiny.
- Ecclesall branch demands:An end to the practice of automatic, instant expulsion or suspension of Labour Party members (apart from in exceptional circumstances:
- A member accused of a breach of rule must be regarded as innocent until proven guilty and be given all the evidence submitted against them by their accuser
- Membership rights must not be removed until disciplinary investigations and procedures have been completed;
- Disciplinary procedures must be time limited. Charges not resolved within three months must be automatically dropped.
- Disciplinary decisions should be taken only by elected bodies, not by paid officials.