April Fools: YF to disaffiliate from Labour
Happy April Fools!
At a national executive meeting of the Young Fabians last weekend, it was formally voted upon for the Young Fabians to disaffiliate from the Labour Party.
Proposals from the Labour leadership to prevent this move were listened to with respect, but we as a committee felt that the future of the Young Fabians was best served by engaging with other political parties, not solely Labour. It has been done very successfully by other centre-left groups, so we follow in a fine tradition.
Rumours that the Young Fabians had been ‘fixing’ selections to promote Fabian candidates, categorically played no part in this decision – it is something that had long been considered and we refuse to comment on these baseless accusations.
In keeping with our gradualist tradition, we have simply grown beyond our current relationship – we bear no ill will to the Party but make no apologies for this decision nor for witholding it from our membership until now.
Labour members of the Young Fabians will soon be joined by those of different political traditions. Today we welcomed several Liberal Democrats, some Tories and even UKIP members to stand with us in our fight for a better future. It’s a move that ushers in an exciting time for us all.
From 01/04/2014 the Young Fabians will be considered separate to the Fabian Society and formally decoupled from the Labour Party and our position in Young Labour.
Of course change can be hard to accept, but a truly One Nation vision of British politics incorporates all political strands.
Our flagship project looking at the isms that make up One Nationism will reflect this – with patriotism being headed by a LibDem, feminism and internationalism by UKIP members, and environmentalism and socialism by Tories.
Liberal Democrats have long spoken of a need for plural politics and their contribution to young people over the course of this parliament truly speaks for itself. Nick Clegg and David Cameron have both defined the formative experiences of so many of our members – it will be a delight to work with them.
Socialism is a Broad Church – but why should it just be for socialists? This move by the Young Fabians is bold and perhaps scary for some but it is an essential step forward. Long lambasted as the champagne socialists of the Labour Movement, we are delighted that that very champagne will now be courtesy of our new friends at CCHQ.
UPDATE: 12:00 1st April 2014
If you put together the first letter of every paragraph above you’ll understand the true nature of our announcement to disaffiliate from Labour! The Young Fabians are the youth movement of the Fabian Society, a founding member of the Labour Party and the original Socialist Society. That should tell you all you need to know about our commitment to Labour.
While our members include those of no firm political persuasion and a small number of non-voting affiliates, our relationship with the Labour Party is fundamental to who we are as an organisation… so shame on you if you believed the spoof!*
We don’t just do cracking April Fools Day jokes – we commission member-led research, campaign, hold great socials and events and work hard to be a voice for our members within the Labour Movement and beyond. The march to victory in 2015 will be a hard one so if you haven’t already, please consider joining the Fabian Society and the Labour Party as well.
*If you did fall for it don’t feel too bad.. we caught out quite a few MPs who should’ve known better!