Sunday, October 01, 2006


About Peter Wheeler

Chair of Claremont Branch Labour Party.
Born in Manchester, 1956.
Joined Labour Party in 1973.
Worked as Labour Party Organiser 1978 - 1999.
Political Development Officer of Amicus.
Father of two, Michael a graduate, Alice at University.
Re-elected to Labour's National Executive Committee in 2006

My Priorities

The most worrying development for the Party over the past few years has been the collapse in Party membership and the corresponding decline in party activity.

It's a lot easier to keep the party strong in opposition - it's easy to be against things! However we don't achieve anything in opposition. The challenge is to stay in power and deliver the policies, which will improve the lives of the majority in this country and keep the Labour movement together.

To do that we need an active dynamic party and our priorities need to be:

Greater encouragement for young Labour and Labour students. A socialist party without a strong appeal to young people is in trouble - yet not since the 1960's has it been harder for young people to identify with the Labour movement. We need to provide the resources and support our young members need.

Stronger links with the Trade union movement. The Labour Party and the Trade union movement are two sides of the same coin. We are strongest when we campaign jointly on the issues that matter to people. Trade unions need to be integrated into our General Election work - delivering a message at the workplace.

More support for our front line members in the CLP's and branches. These shouldn't be called branches, they should be called roots! Our basic organisation is one of the main ways we keep in touch with our voters and members. We need more support for Branch and CLP officers, encouraging more people to come forward and helping them campaign in the communities.

Re-building support in the Muslim and minority ethnic communities. Some of Labours strongest support has come from Britain's Black and Asian communities. We need to continually work to justify that support - repairing the damage caused by the Iraq war and re-building our links at every level. More Black and Asian MP's are a must but it needs to go further than this, with all our representatives being conscious of the concerns and views of our diverse communities.

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