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FOOD industry union BFAWU announced today that it will be consulting its members over whether it should remain affiliated to Labour because of concern over the “political direction” of the party.
The Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union said it is appalled by the treatment of socialist members and MPs, particularly Jeremy Corbyn, under leadership of Sir Keir Starmer.
And it savaged a party that only provided an “illusion” of opposition to the Tories, saying the government’s disastrous handling of the pandemic has too often “enjoyed the full support of Keir Starmer’s Labour.”
The union’s executive made the decision at a recent meeting to launch a consultation of the membership in January.
BFAWU president Ian Hodson said: “Sir Keir Starmer was supposedly elected as a unity candidate, yet his idea of ‘bringing people together’ seems to have amounted to nothing more than deliberate, vindictive and divisive attacks on those regarded as being on the ‘socialist’ side of the party.
“Ironic, given the fact that Labour is supposed to be, at heart, a socialist endeavour.
“Further evidence also seems to show that the party intends to end its financial relationship with trade unions and replace it with money from wealthy individuals and corporations, something which Tony Blair did during his time.”
Mr Hodson added that the union “feels further away from having a political voice than ever,” despite having been “involved with representatives of the Labour Party across three centuries.”
He said: “Indeed, the first recorded meeting was with Keir Hardie in 1893, following a demonstration of journeymen bakers in London.”
In response to the reinstatement of Mr Corbyn to the party earlier this week, Mr Hodson described Mr Starmer’s refusal to restore the whip to the former Labour leader as a “disgraceful act.”
He also questioned who Labour seeks to represent, as he says the party has not backed tenants nor opposed the government’s coronavirus laws or “downright disgusting” Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill – known as the Spycops Bill.
Mr Hodson said: “With a handful of honourable exceptions, this was a betrayal of the labour movement, which raises the question: who exactly are Labour representing at the moment?”
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