Proposed draft constitution for the Labour Left Alliance

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  • submitted by Labour Against the Witchhunt and Sheffield Labour Left
  • LLA’s rules will be discussed at LLA’s launch conference in January/February 2020, but we are keen to start a democratic and open debate on this issue and to hear what others think – this is only a draft and we are happy to incorporate changes we agree with. Please email
  • you can download this proposal as a PDF file here
The key for us is the attempt to give the LLA an effective, democratic and transparent basis. The current organising committee is, in our view, way too big (over 30 people) and way too slow to act quickly and efficiently. We believe that we should have a smaller team of officers/steering group members with clearly defined tasks who can make day-to-day decisions – and that this group is accountable to the bigger organising group (made up, as now, of representatives of all affiliated local and national groups). Which means, for example, that the OG should be able to recall and/or appoint any officers/members of the SC by simple majority at any time.

Labour Left Alliance – our rules

  1. Our aims
  2. Individual supporters
  3. The Organising Group
  4. The Steering Committee
  5. LLA conference

1. Our aims

The Labour Left Alliance was set in July 2019 to bring together groups and individuals on the Labour Left in order to build a democratic, principled and effective alliance that:

  • organises democratically and transparently;
  • both supports a left leadership against attacks by the right, and is independent and able to criticise our left wing leaders when necessary;
  • opposes racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and all other forms of discrimination and is consistently internationalist, a stance which by definition includes support for the democratic and national rights of the Palestinians;
  • opposes attempts to conflate anti-Zionism with antisemitism and opposes the witch-hunt against Jeremy Corbyn and the left;
  • campaigns to radically transform and democratise the Labour Party and the trade unions;
  • campaigns for open selection so that the Parliamentary Labour Party better reflects the views of the vast majority of members;
  • supports and encourages struggles now against austerity and all forms of oppression;
  • supports the free movement of people.

We believe in the free and open exchange of ideas and viewpoints. But once LLA has agreed a particular action, a campaign, a leaflet etc. we ask that supporters do not sabotage or undermine it.

2. Individual supporters

We expect all LLA supporters to be members of the Labour Party and encourage all those not already involved in local Labour Left groups to become active in one or help set one up. Our aim is to organise every single supporter in an active local or regional Labour Left group. We also welcome, on all levels of the organisation, those who have been suspended or expelled as part of the witch-hunt against the left and Jeremy Corbyn.

Individual supporters are requested to pay a minimum of £10/year to help secure the funding of LLA.

3. The Oganising Group

The OG is made up of representatives from all the groups whose affiliation to the LLA has been accepted by the OG. It is up to local and national groups to decide how their representatives are chosen or if and when they should be replaced.

  • All national trade unions can appoint up to three representatives once they have paid the affiliation fee of £500/annum.
  • Any local or regional trade union or Labour Party body can appoint one representative once they have paid the affiliation fee of £100/annum.
  • Every broad left national organisation or organisation representing special interests or particular groups of members with over 200 members can appoint up to two representatives once it has paid the affiliation fee of £200/annum.
  • Every broad left national organisation or organisation representing special interests or groups of members with under 200 members can appoint one representative once it has paid the affiliation fee of £100/annum.
  • Every bona fide local group (including Momentum groups) with a minimum of 10 signed up LLA supporters can appoint one representative once it has paid the affiliation fee of  £20/annum.

All representatives on the Organising Group have to be signed up supporters of the Labour Left Alliance.

Groups/organisations/trade unions that are affiliated nationally may also affiliate their regional or local branches, but these cannot send representatives to the OG to avoid duplication and overrepresentation.

The OG should meet at least quarterly, in a face-to-face or an online meeting. It can also make decisions via email or other agreed communication channels by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe. It produces regular minutes/reports to LLA supporters. If possible, meetings should be scheduled well in advance (at least one month).

All decisions at all levels are made by a simple majority of those voting (excluding abstentions).

The OG can set up working groups and sub-committees on any particular subject. These work closely with the relevant officer on the SC.

4. The Steering Committee

The Organising Group, at its first meeting after conference and then annually, elects a Steering Committee of the size of its own determination and in order to fill at least the following positions, which have the following responsibilities:

  • Secretary and assistant secretary: Overseeing the implementation of decisions made by SC and OG; drafting email bulletins and other communications with members; compiling and distributing minutes; assisting the OG in organising its meetings etc
  • Chair: Prepares agendas and chairs meetings of the SC and, on agreement of the OG, meetings of the OG; assists the secretary with overseeing the implementation of all decisions of the SC and OG, etc
  • National organiser: Main contact for affiliated local and national groups; helps to set up and run new local Labour Left groups etc
  • Campaigns officer: Pulling together, sharing and publicising local experiences, motions and campaigns; seeing through any LLA campaigns agreed by the SC/OG
  • Treasurer: self-explanatory etc
  • Social media coordinator: Overseeing the social media team; making sure there is a steady flow of content produced for public FB page and Twitter, etc
  • Trade union organiser: Organising LLA supporters in different unions; works to get local, regional and national unions affiliated to the LLA; etc
  • Political education officer: Organising training on Labour Party rules; etc

The OG can elect and recall members of the SC at anytime and by a simple majority. Where a position cannot be filled, the OG can co-opt somebody from outside the OG.

The SC is in ‘permanent session’ and makes decisions via face-to-face meetings, or any other agreed ways of communication. All decisions are made by a simple majority of those voting within a given timeframe (ideally, between 24 and 72 hours).

The SC produces regular minutes and work reports for the OG. These should be produced at least monthly, but more regular at peak times.

If there is a serious disagreement on the SC, the issue should be brought to the OG to be resolved.

The SC will discuss any motions or proposals that have been submitted by affiliated, bona fide national or local groups and any motions or proposals submitted by a minimum of 25 individual members. This includes motions and proposals on national campaigns and policy. The movers of those proposals will be informed in writing of the outcome of the discussion. Should the movers disagree with the way forward/the decision by the SC, they can submit their proposals to the Organising Group, which will have to discuss it at the earliest opportunity.

Proposals to change or amend the constitution should be directed to the OG, which will decide if the matter can be decided by the OG or if a special conference should be called.

The SC is accountable to the OG, which can overturn decisions made by the SC at anytime.

5. LLA conference

LLA conference meets at least once a year, but the OG or a petition by 10% of individual supporters, can call a special conference at anytime and on any subject.

Conference makes decisions on:

  1. political strategy
  2. campaigning priorities
  3. structures and constitution

The OG establishes a Conference Arrangements Committee for the purposes of deciding speakers and the agenda and to determine whether motions are within the remit of LLA etc.

The OG decides on the ratio for the election of delegates. It will allocate all members to a particular area where a democratic meeting will be held for the purpose of electing conference delegates and deciding on motions and amendments.

All affiliated local or national groups or any 10 LLA members can submit one motion and one amendment on each separate conference heading.