Corbyn Team To Build ‘Momentum’

The team behind Jeremy Corbyn’s election as Labour Party leader are building a grassroots network to create “a mass movement for real progressive change” from the energy and enthusiasm generated by his campaign.

Momentum logoDescribed as “the successor entity to the Jeremy Corbyn for Leadership campaign”, Momentum is independent of the party leadership and wants to “work with everyone who supports Jeremy’s aim of creating a more fair, equal and democratic society”.

It aims to:

  • organise in every town, city and village to create a mass movement for real progressive change
  • make Labour a more democratic party, with the policies and collective will to implement them in government
  • bring together individuals and groups in our communities and workplaces to campaign and organise on the issues that matter to us.

“Something wonderful happened this summer,” Momentum’s founders wrote in an email signed by five Labour MPs, Richard Burgon, Katy Clark, Clive Lewis, Becky Long-Bailey and Kate Osamor. “After years of being told that there is no alternative to austerity, hundreds of thousands of people stood up for a new kind of politics and agreed with Jeremy Corbyn that austerity is a political choice not a necessity.

“A quarter of a million people made Jeremy Corbyn Labour’s Leader. And now Labour’s conference has given its resounding backing to Jeremy and his shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, to turn Labour into an anti-austerity party of hope and bold alternatives.

“We have begun to change the Labour Party but we still have to show how we can change the country. Throughout the campaign, Jeremy spoke about building a social movement to work for a more democratic, equal and decent society. Now is the time to make this a reality.”

Momentum hopes to do that by organising a “mass mobilisation for a more democratic, equal and decent society”; encouraging people to get involved with the Labour Party and ensuring Labour members’ voices are heard; and supporting other “organisations that can make concrete improvements to people’s lives”.

“Through these actions, we aim to demonstrate on a micro level how collective action and Labour values can transform our society for the better,” they write.

Momentum is calling for immediate help in spreading the word via email and social media.

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Read more about Momentum here.

You can donate to the network here.

See also: ‘Is JC Labour’s New Messiah?’, by Jonathan Timbers, and
‘The ILP’s Statement of the Labour Leadership Election’.


3 Comments

  1. Ben Saltonstall
    15 October 2015

    Great idea in some ways, but its premise seems to rely on there being a big social movement out there. The only working class community organisations in my area are football teams and a group that collects for a teenage cancer unit in Sheffield. Momentum might find it needs to elect a new people. It will also clash with the Labour party, as it is supposed to envelope it.

  2. Harry Barnes
    16 October 2015

    There is a question of who the new members are and whether the Labour Party will engage with them. Email contact may be part of the modern age, but how far can it help to stimulate new members into wider activities?
    Then a problem with established members in many areas is that activists (given to attending meetings and with some of these actually helping to organise activities) have tended to be a small minority of the established membership.

    From the bits and pieces I have access to, a characteristic of the new members seems to be that they are much more likely to come from middle class areas than from working class backgrounds. Which is not to say that they don’t feel their own prospects in life are free from being under threat. But the working class support we lost after the burst in 1997 (and to whom Labour’s efforts were then seldom directed) seem hardly to have been galvanised by the Corbyn campaign. And whilst Jeremy seemed to draw strongly from young people, I am not sure how far this is reflected significantly by the spead of those who have recently signed up. On top of which, the growth in membership does not (yet?) seem to have been reflected in the opinion polls.

    An analysis of Labour’s current membership would help us to understand the situation and its possibilities. This does not, of course, mean that the established activists should just sit around and wait. As members were stimulated to join by Jeremy’s campaign and then by his election as leader, a development of continued campaigning activity via a body such as Momentum is of value. It is then a matter of helping to feed into that body some sensitivity about speading democratic socialist ideas that will capture the public imagination, whilst at the same time not giving hostages to fortune.

  3. […] a social movement to work for a more democratic, equal and decent society’ is now a stated aim of Momentum. Momentum described its strategy for achieving this goal as a ‘mass mobilisation for […]

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