Check where your union stands on PR and find a model motion

Look below to find out whether your union has a policy on Proportional Representation - and find our suggested model motion to table at your branch and send to your union’s conference. The text can be changed, added to or combined however you like…


Labour-affiliated unions with no policy on PR

Aslef, Community, CWU, FBU, MU, Unison and Unite

These unions have no formal position on PR… at least not yet! We suggest putting forward the following motion:

Conference notes that the UK is one of only three major developed countries to use a First Past the Post voting system for general elections. Most developed countries, including the world’s most equal and progressive societies, use a form of Proportional Representation in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

Conference believes that the Labour Party has long been the crucial means of winning progressive change in the UK. But the gains of past Labour governments are quickly undone when the power of majority government is all too often handed to the Conservative Party, despite them receiving only a minority of the votes. In fourteen of the last fifteen general elections, most people have voted for parties to the left of the Conservatives, yet they have been in power for most of this time.

Successive Conservative governments that could not have held office under a proportional system have attacked trade union rights and workers’ rights, public services and the welfare state. This has had devastating consequences for all who depend on these things and has made the UK one of the most unequal societies in the developed world.

Furthermore, First Past the Post means that a small minority of voters decide the outcomes of elections, forcing political parties to focus their efforts on marginal constituencies to the neglect of the millions who live in safe seats. It is unacceptable for our democracy that there are constituencies that have not changed hands in one hundred years; in which people have been born, voted their whole lives, and died, without ever influencing the result of a general election.

There are tried-and-tested forms of Proportional Representation which maintain a close constituency link between MPs and their voters, allow voters to vote for named candidates rather than just for parties, and do so while ensuring that Parliament reflects how the people voted.

Conference resolves to reject First Past the Post and support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation by the next Labour government.

Labour-affiliated unions that currently oppose PR

 
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GMB

GMB’s current policy is strongly opposed to PR. We suggest putting forward the following motion:

Conference notes that existing policy is to support the use of our disproportional First Past the Post voting system, and oppose the use of Proportional Representation in which seats match votes and all votes count equally.
Conference notes that this was decided on the basis that right wing voters may be represented in Parliament and that the coalition governments that often arise through Proportional Representation are against the interests of voters and the public.
Conference believes that the evidence and circumstances have changed and our policy must change with them.
First Past the Post has been no defense against Donald Trump’s far-right Republican party in the United States, which now imposes its hateful agenda against the wishes of most Americans. Nor has it done anything to combat the widespread alienation and mistrust that have pushed British politics towards similarly dangerous territory. Proportional Representation would mean that right wing politicians are scrutinized, challenged and exposed for what they are.
Coalition government under Proportional Representation would bring about much needed compromise and consensus building in our divided nation. All the world’s most equal and progressive societies achieved what they have using forms of Proportional Representation.
First Past the Post has too often gifted the Conservative Party a parliamentary majority despite having the support of only a modest minority of the electorate. In fourteen of the last fifteen general elections, most people have voted for parties to the left of the Conservatives, yet they have been in power for most of this time.
Successive Conservative governments that could not have held office under a proportional system have attacked trade union rights and workers’ rights, public services and the welfare state. This has had devastating consequences for all who depend on these things and has made the UK one of the most unequal societies in the developed world.
Conference resolves to reject First Past the Post and support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation by the next Labour government.
 
Usdaw.png
 

Usdaw

Usdaw’s current policy is strongly opposed to PR. We suggest putting forward the following motion:

Conference notes that existing policy is to support the use of our disproportional First Past the Post voting system, and oppose the use of Proportional Representation in which seats match votes and all votes count equally.
Conference notes that this was decided on the basis that the coalition governments that often arise through Proportional Representation are against the interests of voters and the public, and that representatives elected through PR are accountable to their parties rather than the voters.
Conference believes that the evidence and circumstances have changed and our policy must change with them.
First Past the Post has done nothing to combat the widespread alienation and mistrust that have pushed British politics into dangerous territory. Coalition government under Proportional Representation would bring about much needed compromise and consensus-building in our divided nation. All the world’s most equal and progressive societies achieved what they have using forms of Proportional Representation.
First Past the Post has too often gifted the Conservative Party a parliamentary majority despite having the support of only a modest minority of the electorate. In fourteen of the last fifteen general elections, most people have voted for parties to the left of the Conservatives, yet they have been in power for most of this time.
Successive Conservative governments that could not have held office under a proportional system have attacked trade union rights and workers’ rights, public services and the welfare state. This has had devastating consequences for all who depend on these things and has made the UK one of the most unequal societies in the developed world.
Furthermore, First Past the Post means that a small minority of voters decide the outcomes of elections, forcing political parties to focus their efforts on marginal constituencies to the neglect of the millions who live in safe seats. It is unacceptable for our democracy that there are constituencies that have not changed hands in one hundred years; in which people have been born, voted their whole lives, and died, without ever influencing the result of a general election.
There are tried-and-tested forms of Proportional Representation which not only allow voters to vote for named candidates rather than just for parties, but give voters more choice and power to decide who their local representative will be than is possible under First Past the Post. Proportional Representation of the kind used in Scotland, Germany, Northern Ireland, or Ireland therefore empowers voters, keeps a local constituency link, and does so while ensuring that Parliament reflects the people.
Conference resolves to reject First Past the Post and support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation by the next Labour government.

Unaffiliated unions with no policy on PR

BMA, Equity, NASUWT, NEU, Royal College of Nursing, RMT, and many more!

These unions have no formal position on PR. We suggest putting forward the following motion:

Conference notes that the UK is one of only three major developed countries to use a First Past the Post voting system for general elections. Most developed countries, including the world’s most equal and progressive societies, use a form of Proportional Representation in which all votes count equally and seats match votes.

Conference believes that First Past the Post has not served the interests of progressive politics in the UK. It has too often gifted the Conservative Party a parliamentary majority despite having the support of only a modest minority of the electorate. In fourteen of the last fifteen general elections, most people have voted for parties to the left of the Conservatives, yet they have been in power for most of this time.

Successive Conservative governments that could not have held office under a proportional system have attacked trade union rights and workers’ rights, public services and the welfare state. This has had devastating consequences for all who depend on these things and has made the UK one of the most unequal societies in the developed world.

Furthermore, First Past the Post means that a small minority of voters decide the outcomes of elections, forcing political parties to focus their efforts on marginal constituencies to the neglect of the millions who live in safe seats. It is unacceptable for our democracy that there are constituencies that have not changed hands in one hundred years; in which people have been born, voted their whole lives, and died, without ever influencing the result of a general election.

There are tried-and-tested forms of Proportional Representation which maintain a close constituency link between MPs and their voters, allow voters to vote for named candidates rather than just for parties, and do so while ensuring that Parliament reflects the people.

Conference resolves to reject First Past the Post and support the introduction of a form of Proportional Representation.

Unions that already support PR

 
 

BFAWU, Napo, PCS and TSSA

These unions already support Proportional Representation, but if you’re a member you can still play a vital role in the campaign. Contact us at labour4pr@makevotesmatter.org.uk to find out how.