Party activist fails to halt ‘men only’ contest to stand in Hove for Labour

Posted On 14 Jun 2013 at 6:45 pm

A Labour activist has failed in a last-ditch attempt to prevent the contest to be the party’s parliamentary candidate in Hove from being a men only selection.

Greg Hadfield, formerly the party’s agent in the Brighton Pavilion constituency, urged Labour to suspend the process so that the shortlist could include at least two women in line with party rules.

His plea was rejected and the selection is scheduled to take place tomorrow morning (Saturday 15 June) at All Saints Church Hall in Hove.

Mr Hadfield said: “It is shameful that the officers of Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party compiled an initial long list of 16 men and no women.

“In large part, this was because they decided – without any discussion with members – to synchronise the Hove ‘open’ selection with the all-women contest in Brighton Kemptown.

“Despite the party’s own rules, which explicitly require a gender-balanced shortlist, members in Hove now have to choose from a shortlist comprising three men.

“And it is not because there is a shortage of excellent women candidates.

“We have outstanding applicants in the all-women selections in Kemptown and in Brighton Pavilion.

“In the whole history of British democracy, Labour in Brighton and Hove has never chosen a woman candidate except in all-women selections.

“Indeed, since 2010, in the whole of this Parliament, there have been 19 ‘open’ selections in Labour’s target seats.

“Hove will be the 19th of these to be won by a man.”

The candidates are former Brighton and Hove City Council leader Simon Burgess, hospital boss Adrian Twyning and charity chief Peter Kyle.

  1. Andy Taylor Reply

    Party activist fails. A good job too.

    Letting this man’s ego succeed would have been the worst result for Labour. While he’s being investigated for aggressive and intimidating behaviour towards female party members, no one should take a lesson from him on equality.

    Whether he’s a stooge for the Greens or Tories, I don’t know, but he does nothing for Labour.

  2. Valerie Paynter Reply

    Where is Labour coming from on gender? Hove was not allowed to have a male candidate for Labour when Ivor Caplin stepped down.

    An all-women list was “automatically triggered” and a woman from Chichester was helicoptered in to stand and be selected and eventually become a one-term MP for Hove who didn’t even have her party’s wholehearted support when she stood again in 2010. Celia Barlow was a major error of judgment.

    People should be selected on merit, not gender! Labour has lost it.

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