FOR LABOUR PARTY BRANCHES AND CLPs
We actively encourage you to adapt the wording of these resolutions according to the concerns or circumstances of your own group. We would ask you to:
After the resolution is passed, please
scroll down or follow these links for the text of resolutions
how to get a resolution passed in your constituency labour party (CLP)
your CLP has a "delegate" structure (each branch sends delegates to
meetings of a General Committee), resolutions must first be passed by a
local branch, and then submitted for discussion at the GC. Submit your resolution to your local branch secretary in time for it to be included on the agenda for the next meeting. When the motion is passed by the branch, you can request that it is sent to the GC for discussion.
Many CLPs, particularly in rural areas, have an "all-member" structure, in which all local members are invited to attend CLP meetings. Some of these require motions to be submitted by a branch, but in many CLPs, a motion may be submitted by any member. Submit the motion to your CLP Secretary in time for it to be included on the agenda.
LCER is happy to supply a speaker to your CLP meeting, though a resolution cannot be proposed by a visiting speaker - a local member would have to do that.
SUBMISSIONS TO LABOUR PARTY CONFERENCE
Over recent years, the requirement that CLPs may only submit "contemporary" motions to Conference has meant that all motions submitted on voting reform were ruled out of order.
The restriction that motions must be "contemporary" has now been removed. As of 2019, Party rules state that up to 10 motions from CLPs, and up to 10 from affiliated organisations, may be discussed.
Any of the model resolutions for branches and CLPs may be adapted for Conference, or see resolutions already submitted to Conference. Please adapt freely according to the situation or interests of your own group.
Please consider very carefully the title and first line of your resolution. This will ensure that when your resolution is considered for the compositing programme at Conference, it is considered as a motion on voting reform, rather than (eg) constitutional reform or local government. So, if your resolution is seeking an end to FPTP for UK general elections, make sure this is clear in the title and preamble.
how clps send motions to conference
Currently, each CLP may submit only one resolution to Conference. The deadline for submission is usually a few weeks before the start of Conference, but many CLPs meet to decide what motion they will be submitting much earlier than this. Find out from your CLP secretary when the relevant meeting will take place, and submit the text of your resolution. Be prepared to argue the case for your CLP to submit a motion on voting reform, since there will very likely be other motions under consideration. It doesn't hurt to do a bit of work beforehand to drum up support among your fellow members.
MODEL RESOLUTIONS FOR TRADE UNIONS
Any of the resolutions drawn up for CLPs or Labour Party Conference may be adapted for different types of organisation, including Trade Unions. Our Trade Unions page has links to model resolutions specially formulated for trade unions.
text of model resolutions
Notes that under the First Past the Post (FPTP) voting system
We believe that
We call upon the Labour Party to enter the next election with a manifesto commitment to a programme of democratic reform which includes a comitment to the introduction of a voting system in which the allocation of seats reflects the votes cast.
We call upon the Justice and Home Affairs Policy Commission of the National Policy Forum to consult Labour's membership on the issue of voting reform, and to bring a policy document on voting reform to the next Labour Party Conference.
We resolve to afflilate to the Labour Campaign for Electoral Reform (LCER).
Resolution to replace the First Past the Post (FPTP) voting system in the UK
[This CLP/Conference/etc] notes that most democratic countries across the world do not use the FPTP electoral system, but use systems which ensure that the seats won by each party broadly reflect the distribution of votes cast.
We note that in the UK, tiers of government established over recent decades have not adopted FPTP for their elections: the Scottish, Welsh, Northern Ireland and London assemblies are all conducted under proportional voting systems, as are local elections in Scotland and Wales.
In Westminster, our current voting systems leads to electoral “deserts”. The problem particularly affects Labour voters in South West, South East and East of England where in 2017 almost a third of votes cast went to Labour, but over 85 per cent of seats were won by Conservatives. Millions of Labour voters in these regions do not live within do not live within 50 miles or more of a seat represented by a Labour MP.
Our current system distorts our politics and representation.
We call on Labour to include in its manifesto that we are now open to changing our voting system; to introduce a system under which the seats won by each party broadly match the votes cast, both in aggregate terms and within regions; and which retains the constituency - MP link.
Chichester Constituency Labour Party calls upon the Labour Party to reject "first past the post", the voting system currently used for General Elections, and to support the introduction of a form of proportional representation at all levels of government to ensure that all votes count equally and seats match votes. Chichester Constituency Labour Party additionally calls upon the Justice and Home Affairs Policy Commission of the National Policy Forum to consult the Party membership about their views on the above proposal in the next cycle of policy documents.
Eastleigh CLP calls upon the Labour Party to reject First Past the Post in all national and local elections in favour of a system of Proportional Representation in which all votes count equally and seats match votes. Additionally calls upon the National Policy Forum to consult the party membership about their views on this proposal in the next round of policy documents.
Our archaic electoral system is antidemocratic and not fit for purpose.
We need a properly representative and transparent electoral system where no vote is wasted. We need to change to a form of proportional representation for national elections. This should be one which allows M.P.s to keep their local constituency link. The voting age should be lowered to 16. Voting at weekends and the possibility of electronic voting should be investigated.
This party therefore calls upon the Labour Party to reject First Past the Post, the current voting system for General Elections, and to launch a consultation to choose a new voting system in which seats will broadly reflect the votes cast.
We call on the Labour Party to include proposals for reform in the Party’s manifesto for the next General election, with the declared intent that the new electoral changes will be put in place for the next general election.
Conference notes: The Leader of the House of Commons is due to present the Boundary Commission's final recommendations for constituency boundaries to Parliament before conference season recess. Analysis by Politics For The Many indicates that these changes embed a profound Conservative bias, such that: Labour would need a lead of 3.9% to become the largest party.
Labour would need a lead of 8.2% to win a majority. The Conservatives would need a lead of 1.6% to win a majority. That such mismatches between votes and seats are a feature of theFirst Past the Post voting system. That most developed countries use some form of Proportional Representation in which seats broadly match votes. Conference recognises: There is significant support for Proportional Representation among voters, the party and affiliated memberships and the PLP. There have been 32 CLP motions passed in the last two years calling for a review of party policy towards electoral reform and for a commitment to Proportional Representation. It is incumbent on a democratic party to respond to this by consulting the membership at large on this issue, to establish whether there is popular support for a commitment to Proportional Representation.
Conference calls: On the National Policy Forum - or the relevant body following the Democracy Review - to consult the party membership to seek their views on whether Labour should introduce a system of Proportional Representation as part of our transformative programme for government.
Conference believes that Labour should go into the next general election open to changing the voting system we use to elect MPs by dropping its default position supporting first past the post. We need voting reform on the remit of the Constitutional Convention Labour is offering and argue for a voting system which reflects our values of equality and democracy, makes votes count, reaches out to safe Labour and Conservative seats, not just target marginals, and which illustrates how Labour will exercise power with the people.