Labour’s Policy Proposals Published

The Labour Party has published its final set of policy documents for consultation and amendment by CLPs before they are adopted for its ‘One Nation manifesto’ next year.

Produced by its National Policy Forum (NPF) following Labour’s policy review process, the eight papers are available on the party’s Your Britain website, and represent its current thinking on the economy; work and business; living standards and quality of life; community, housing and local government; education; health; politics; and foreign policy.Miliband One Nation lead

“A One Nation manifesto will be written from the grassroots up, not the top down — so your input is vital,” claims NPF chair Angela Eagle on the Your Britain website. “These papers represent what we’ve learned from talking to members, supporters, affiliates, businesses and charities over the last three years, as well as the input of the Shadow Cabinet Policy Review.

“Now we want you and your CLP to debate the priorities, ideas and policies set out in these papers, and put forward your own ideas.”

Every CLP is entitled to propose up to 10 amendments before the deadline on 13 June, from which NPF members will then choose ideas for consideration at a meeting in July. The final papers will then be debated and adopted by Labour’s annual conference in September as official party policy for the 2015 general election.

The policy documents can be read online here, or downloaded in pdf format.

The individual documents can be accessed directly from these links:

  1. Stability and Prosperity Our policy on the economy — from growth and the economic recovery, to public spending, taxation and how we can reduce the deficit in a fair way.
  2. Work and Business Our thinking on how the UK can compete in a global economy, including how we can support business, rights at work, fair pay and the future of pensions.
  3. Living Standards and Sustainability Issues affecting quality of life in Britain, the cost of living, and our environment. Key topics include energy, climate change, food, rural affairs and transport.
  4. Stronger, Safer Communities How we rebuild our communities and create a society in which everyone plays their part — including community safety, housing, local government and immigration.
  5. Education and Children Our childcare plans, and thinking on young people’s wellbeing and learning — from early years through to further and higher education and apprenticeships.
  6. Health and Care Our plans for the NHS, health and social care — and how we’ll bring about a new focus on whole person care.
  7. Better Politics How we can build a One Nation politics — looking at engagement, equality, civil society and the change our political system needs.
  8. Britain’s Global Role Britain’s role within the global community — including foreign policy, international development and defence.


Have your say here:


  1. Harry Barnes
    8 April 2014

    I hope that I am not flogging a dead horse, but more on this topic can be found here –

  2. Harry Barnes
    3 April 2014

    It is me again. In have now undertaken a careful examination of Labour’s eight consultative documents, which can be accessed via the above article. They are much more hopeful than anything I ever imagined.

    They offer proposals on (1) tackling climate change, (2) re-distribution from the weathly to the poor, (3) overcoming energy price rips offs, (4) providing decent housing and other communal facilities, (5) educational openings for under-achievers (including second chance education), (6) an integrated health service, (7) devolution, (8) improving electoral registration to tackle the missing six and a half million voters, (9) third world aid and development, including international pressures for the use of the Robin Hood Tax, and (10) – Len McCluskey please note – what could be called a 14-point Trade Union Charter in a section of the document “Work and Business”.

    I am not claiming that these proposals (and those surrounding them) are perfect. But they do open avenues for pressure to get them clarified and developed. It is a different agenda from anything we got in the Blair-Brown years. What is needed is that it should all be pushed to the front of the political agenda. It will be difficult to start gaining support for a mainly unheard of programme just in the four weeks run-up to a General Election.

  3. Harry Barnes
    16 March 2014

    Even if the consultation procedures in the Labour Party are fixed, it seems to me to be a useful exercise for Labour Party members to use them. For it provides an opportunity for local people to meet together and discuss the items which we would like to see in Labour’s 2015 General Election Manifesto. There is much to be said for political debates.

    So in my area, we are holding political discussiion meetings around the above consultative documents in April and May – with a member of Labour’s National Policy Forum explaining the procedures at our first meeting. Then our local Labour Party Branch will also consider the documents at its April meeting as a feed in to a special constituency meeting in May. It is again hoped to have a member of the National Policy Forum present. We have until June 13th to make submissions on these matters to the Labour Party at national level. What will the ILP be doing?

  4. Harry Barnes
    13 March 2014

    As a follow up to my earlier comment, the PES Manifesto is dealt with here –

  5. Harry Barnes
    12 March 2014

    The European Elections take place on 22 May. This is part of a reply I received from the Labour Party yesterday about Labour Policy for these elections. Since then Ed Miliband has expressed his opposition to an in-out EU referendum.

    “We will be publishing our manifesto for May’s European Parliamentary Elections towards the start of the short campaign. The content is currently being considered by the Britain’s Global Role Policy Commission and the National Executive Committee, following a consultation on Your Britain, our online home of ideas and policy development. The Commission received submissions from a broad range of sources; members, affiliates, external organisations and members of the public.”

    Labour’s still developing programme on the EU can be found covering just three-quarters of page eight in the consultative document on “Britain’s Global Role”. This can be found via link number 8 shown in the Matthew’s above article. Yet a Manifesto was adopted by the Party of European Socialist (PES) in Rome on 1 March. Labour is a member of the PES. Why aren’t we pushing it?

  6. Ernest Jacques
    12 March 2014

    On the face of it these draft policy (One Nation) proposals are hugely positive and encouraging and a significant improvement on the nebulous (1997) Blairite spin ‘Things Can Only Get Better’.

    But on reflection, this old cynic is reminded of the 15th century proverb “fine words butter no parsnips”. In this regard, ILPers and Labour Party members know full well we have been here many times before and, apart from the post-war years and the Attlee government, and despite the worthy endeavours of a minority of former and existing MPs, like Harry Barnes, et al, the hopes, aspirations, trust and loyalty of large sections of the Labour movement, and of the working class, have been doggedly frustrated and have come to nought.

    Capitalism reigns supreme and without a credible alternative economic strategy and widespread community and electoral support for change, these warm (One Nation) words will amount to not much, apart from a continuation of the status quo and more weary frustration.

    From my perspective, it is disappointing and hugely frustrating that Ed Balls and the Shadow Cabinet, apart from a few warm words, political spin and some marginal policy differences, remain wedded to Tory/Lib Dem light-touch regulation and neoliberalism.

    Disappointing, but highly predictably, most Labour Party MPs who are able spin their way into Parliament and up the greasy pole, and who manage to achieve the dizzy heights of ministerial office, all too often fail to achieve much and, importantly, let down those most vulnerable and in need of their help and support.

    While being in government can be challenging and will often involve compromise, the record of New (Blue) Labour in government seems to have been that the dirty deals and compromise always involves capitulation to big money and the forces of capital, the establishment, the media and the status quo, and conversely attacks on working people, their trade unions and on our collective and community support programmes.

    If you had said to me in the ’70s and ’80s that workers’ rights, social justice, public services, our welfare state and NHS would be rolled back and privatised; that the social compact would count for nothing; and that inequality, deprivation, social exclusion and food-banks would be commonplace and a growing phenomenon under successive Tory, Labour and Con/Dem governments, I would thought you mad and that such a scenario was impossible.

    But significantly it was New (Blue) Labour that set the agenda and were centrally culpable for the unbelievable cost, waste, greed and dishonesty associated with outsourcing public services, the Private Finance Initiative, the commercialisation of the NHS and Quantitative Easing – a policy agenda that has cost the UK billions (if not trillions) and which has been magically blamed on the unsustainable cost of our welfare state and community services, with the unemployed, including the working poor and the disabled, paying a terrible price for the incompetence, greed and corruption of top bankers, the political elite, the city and big money.

    This is an unbalanced and unfair society, characterised by the hundreds of thousands of UK citizens unable now to afford a mortgage, pay their private sector rents, the bedroom tax, heat their homes, feed themselves and their families, with tens of thousands of the poor now routinely socially cleansed and moved out of neighbourhood communities into sub-standard bed and breakfast accommodation in seaside towns and sink estates, sometimes hundreds of miles from the families, friends and the neighbourhoods they grew up in and love, to make way for up-and-coming young trendies and those who can afford to live in regenerated and gentrified inner city areas and salubrious and gated housing estates. And when we naively thought things could not get any worse, we now witness the most cruel and discriminatory way this system treats the poorest and most vulnerable, with rich landlords and estate agents throughout the UK deciding not to let houses and flats to all those on housing benefit because these UK citizens are deemed to be financial and social deficients who might now default on their rents. And the silence from Labour MPs and Labour councils (with some admirable exceptions) is shockingly deafening and significant.

    And we know, don’t we, that many of those Labour MPs responsible for this neoliberal horror story have been (and will be) rewarded with gongs, fancy titles and a seat in the House of Lords and/or into the welcoming arms of the city and big business.

    Sadly, it seems to be an iron law of politics that Labour leaders, people like Blair, Brown, Mandelson and Balls, promise so much and achieve so little. But there again, it just reinforces my view that the current UK first-past-the-post and Westminster parliamentary system is outdated, bust and unfit for purpose.

    But, there again, when it comes to politics and to strategy and tactics my life has been overflowing with blunder, bluster, mistakes, bad decisions and failure, and it would please me hugely if Ed Miliband, Jon Cruddas and all those who are serious about change and social justice prove me wrong, yet again.

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