By Jack Holmes
Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) have made the decision to ban new members of the party from voting in the upcoming Labour leadership election.
The news came as it was announced the current leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn would not need to gain 51 nominations from his peers to be included on the ballot paper and has an automatic place.
The decision means any members of the Labour Party that have joined in the last six months, around 20% of Labour’s current members, will be unable to vote.
There will also be an increased sign-up fee, from the usual £3, to £25, with only two days for the public to apply to join in this fashion.
There are still a number of ways to get around the £25 fee however. If you’re a student you can join the Unite Union for 50p a week, becoming an affiliate member on August 8th. Secondly if you’re black, Asian or belong to an ethnic minority, you can join BAME Labour for £5 for a two-year membership. If you are LGBT you can join Labour LGBT for £8 a year as well as voting through Scientists for Labour for £5.
A petition has been launched to have the decision overruled by Tim Longson who commented, “We believe that as this will disqualify up to 20% of the whole Labour party membership (around 100,000 members), and that this is unacceptable and misrepresentational (sic) of the democratic Labour membership will.
The Labour Party’s members have increased by 100,000 since the EU referendum, now standing at around half a million, making it by far the largest party in the UK and one of the largest socialist parties in Europe.
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