Labour Party in Northern Ireland

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Labour Party in Northern Ireland
President Baroness Blood
Chair Anna McAleavy
Secretary Boyd Black
Vice Chair Kathryn Johnston
Founded 2008
Youth wing Young Labour Northern Ireland
Membership  (2016) 2,000[citation needed]
Ideology Social democracy
Democratic socialism
Political position Centre-left
European affiliation Party of European Socialists
International affiliation Progressive Alliance,
Socialist International (Observer)
European Parliament group Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats
Colours Red
NI Assembly
0 / 108
Local Government
0 / 462
Website
http://www.labourpartyni.org
Politics of Northern Ireland
Political parties
Elections

The Labour Party in Northern Ireland (LPNI) is the Northern Irish organisation of the Labour Party. The Labour Party is not a registered political party in Northern Ireland and does not currently contest elections.[1] As of December 2015, there were approximately 1,700 Labour Party members and supporters in Northern Ireland.[2]

In the 2016 Assembly elections, 8 members of the party are running for election under the umbrella of the Northern Ireland Labour Representation Committee, as the Labour Party NEC had refused to allow candidates to stand under the Labour banner.[3]

History

For many years the UK Labour Party held to a policy of not allowing residents of Northern Ireland to apply for membership,[4] instead supporting the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) which informally takes the Labour whip in the House of Commons.[5]

The 2003 Labour Party Conference accepted legal advice that the party could not continue to prohibit residents of the province joining,[6] and whilst the National Executive Committee has established a regional constituency party it has not yet agreed to contest elections there.

Labour Representation Committee

In December 2015 the LPNI's executive committee voted to contest elections in Northern Ireland.[2] In the run-up to the 2016 Assembly elections, local members registered a new party, the Northern Ireland Labour Representation Committee, with the Electoral Commission recognising them in April 2016. The party's constitution has a clause stating that it will disband once Labour lifts the ban on contesting elections in Northern Ireland. The new party's leader is journalist and author Kathryn Johnston. Several former members of the Northern Ireland Labour Party hold membership, including Erskine Holmes and Douglas McIldoon.[7] Eight candidates are running under the label.[8]

Johnston highlighted policy differences with the SDLP, including Labour's position on abortion, same-sex marriage and support for an integrated and secular education system.[9] The move to stand in elections was assisted by former Labour MP Andrew MacKinlay.[10]

They stood one candidate each in 8 of the 18 constituencies in the 2016 Assembly elections. They won no seats, with candidates obtaining between 0.2% and 0.7% of the first preference votes.

Electoral performance

Northern Irish Assembly

Election Votes Share of votes Seats Note(s)
2016 1,577 0.2
0 / 108
#15

See also

References

  1. http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/politics/ed-milibands-refusal-to-fight-elections-in-northern-ireland-slammed-by-labour-members-30063777.html Ed Miliband's refusal to fight elections in Northern Ireland slammed by Labour members, Belfast Telegraph LIAM CLARKE – 05 March 2014
  2. 2.0 2.1 "LPNI prepare to fight elections". Retrieved 2016-01-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Labour rebels defy party to set up new Northern Ireland party". www.newsletter.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Labour Party membership form at the Wayback Machine, ca. 1999. via Internet Archive. Retrieved 31 March 2007. "Residents of Northern Ireland are not eligible for membership."
  5. Understanding Ulster by Antony Alcock, Ulster Society Publications, 1997. Chapter II: The Unloved, Unwanted Garrison. Via Conflict Archive on the Internet. Retrieved 31 October 2008.
  6. "Labour NI ban overturned". BBC News. 1 October 2003. Retrieved 31 May 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Labour rebels defy party to set up new Northern Ireland party". www.newsletter.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Labour rebels defy party to set up new Northern Ireland party". www.newsletter.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Labour rebels defy party to set up new Northern Ireland party". www.newsletter.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-14.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. http://sluggerotoole.com/2016/04/13/welcome-to-the-northern-ireland-labour-representation-committee-party/

External links