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REBECCA LONG BAILEY and Richard Burgon received the backing of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union (BFAWU) today to progress to the next stage of the Labour leadership and deputy leadership contests.
BFAWU said that shadow business secretary Ms Long Bailey had “demonstrated her support for our aims and objectives as a union.”
The union’s support came as she set out her vision for leadership, saying she would work to “end the gentlemen’s club of politics” and outline plans for more devolution of power from Westminster to communities.
On Thursday, she received the backing of Momentum, while a Survation poll gave her a 2 per cent lead on shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer, also running for the leadership.
Shadow justice secretary Mr Burgon, a former trade-union lawyer, has been referred to as the “first BFAWU member to be elected as an MP.” The union said he had joined BFAWU while working at Thompsons Solicitors.
The union said the nominating decisions had been made “following consultations with regional and branch activists.”
BFAWU supported Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and, with its one representative on the party’s National Executive Committee, opposed attempts to impose the full IHRA definition of anti-semitism in 2018 on the basis that it would be used to conflate anti-semitism with criticism of Israeli government policy.
So far, Sir Keir Starmer has been nominated by Unison and environmental group SERA, while Lisa Nandy has been backed by the National Union of Mineworkers.
TSSA has announced that it will ballot members on the executive body recommendations of Mr Starmer or Ms Long Bailey for leader, and shadow education secretary Angela Rayner or Tooting MP Rosena Allin-Khan for deputy.
In order to progress to the postal ballot of members and supporters, all 10 contenders – five for leader and five for deputy — must be nominated by either 5 per cent of local parties or three affiliated groups, including two trade unions, amounting to 5 per cent of Labour’s affiliated membership.
There are 12 unions formally linked to the Labour Party, of which five — Unite, Unison, GMB, Usdaw and CWU — are large enough to help candidates get to the ballot paper through the affiliates route.
The candidates will be taking part in leadership hustings, with the first event scheduled in Liverpool today.
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