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A YOUNG shopworker has won the support of two of Britain’s biggest unions for a key Labour Party post.
GMB activist Lara McNeill (pictured) announced today that she will stand to be the youth rep on Labour’s national executive committee (NEC).
Ms McNeill, who works for a supermarket alongside studying medicine, has been endorsed by left group Momentum. As well as her own union, she is also supported by general union Unite and transport union TSSA.
The election is likely to be hard-fought. In a contentious vote in 2016, Progress-backed Jasmin Beckett defeated left-winger James Elliott by the narrowest of margins to represent the youth wing on the NEC.
Ms McNeill is also likely to face a challenge from the organised right — which has traditionally centred its powerbase in the autonomous Labour Students organisation. But so far, she is the only activist to declare her candidacy.
The NEC role is most coveted by party right-wingers because of its importance in controlling the wider party.
But Ms McNeill’s supporters will hope she can repeat her strong performance in an election last year when she became vice-chair of Labour Students in an upset for the right.
The 21-year-old said: “I have spent countless hours frustrated with the wasted potential of our youth section to transform our workplaces, communities and campuses.
“Often, we are used as boots on the ground for elections and nothing but an afterthought following any electoral mobilisation.”
She said she would champion the appetite among Britain’s youth for a “bold, socialist future as an alternative to ecological catastrophe, poverty and neoliberalism.”
Voting, for under-27s, will be open from February 19 until March 16.
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