Campaign news

Neil Findlay MSP for Scottish Labour

28th October 2014

The selection of a new Scottish Labour leader is now underway.

Neil Findlay MSP has announced his candidature and is supported by the LRC’s sister organisation in Scotland the Campaign for Socialism. Their website is at:

Scottish Labour Campaign for Socialism

This is Neil Findlay’s opening statement:

After much deliberation I have decided to stand in the contest for the leader of the Scottish Labour party - here is my statement to the press.

Labour’s Shadow Health secretary Neil Findlay has entered the race to become the next leader of the Scottish Labour party.

Announcing his intention stand Mr Findlay said,

“I have been overwhelmed by the messages of support from people from within the Labour party and across the wider Labour movement all urging me to stand. It is no secret that I wanted Gordon Brown to run but since Gordon has ruled himself out I now believe we need to have a wide ranging debate about the way forward for the Labour party but more importantly the country.
I want to bring the Labour party together to work for progressive change and create a fairer, more equal and prosperous Scotland. If elected Labour leader I will put the issue of social justice at heart of everything we do – this is the historic mission of the Scottish Labour party but it also has to be about what we deliver for the Scottish people in this post referendum period.”

Here is a link to a recent article by Neil in the Morning Star arguing that Scottish Labour must attack the SNP from the left.

M Star

Malcolm Burns in the Morning Star reported on Saturday’s successful Scottish Labour Campaign for Socialism meeting:

MSP Neil Findlay laid out a radical new policy agenda for Scottish Labour at a packed meeting of the party’s left-wing group following the resignation of Johann Lamont at the weekend.
Activists at the Campaign for Socialism (CfS) conference in Glasgow supported calls for a left candidate to challenge for the Scottish leadership.

Neil Findlay told the meeting that Scottish Labour needed to work “hand in glove with our allies in the trade unions” to create policies which would put “clear red water” between the party and the SNP.

Setting out an agenda based on the work of the Red Paper Collective of which he is a member, Mr Findlay said: “Labour needs to make a commitment to full employment, and to a living wage, unlike the current Scottish government.”

He called for the “redemocratisation of local councils and an end to the council tax freeze” and proposed a council house-building programme to create “social housing on a grand scale” which would provide jobs and a boost to the economy.

“We must restore the 40,000 jobs which have been lost at local councils over the years of austerity and end the social care scandal of poorly paid staff and 15-minute visits,” said Mr Findlay.
He said Labour should “stop seeking complicated new systems” of means testing.

“We already have the one we need — it’s called the tax system and we should use it for redistribution of wealth,” he said.

CfS convener Elaine Smith MSP called for a left-wing candidate supported by the trade unions for the Scottish Labour leadership.

“We know we’ll have a right-wing candidate, that’s for sure,” she warned.

“But if we get a London-based careerist as Scottish leader, we will be finished.”

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