Secretary: Keith Flett 07803 167266
Haringey trade unionists welcome re-election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader
Haringey TUC the local North London wing of the TUC has welcomed news of Jeremy Corbyn’s re-election as leader of the Labour Party.
The trade unionists say that while there are always differences and disagreements the broad principles that Corbyn stand on, such as opposition to austerity led cuts in services and anti-racism, are ones that have great support in the local labour movement.
Corbyn started his labour movement career in Haringey in the 1970s and has been a good friend to Haringey TUC over 5 decades.
Haringey TUC Secretary Keith Flett said, apparently I once disagreed with Jeremy over some aspect of William Morris’s politics but generally when it comes to the day to day business of the labour movement, defending and advancing the interests of ordinary people, we are on the same political page, if not always quite the same paragraph.
Jeremy Corbyn the Haringey Years
Some of the things Janet Daley said in her July 2015 Telegraph article (link below) about Jeremy Corbyn and Haringey were true.
Corbyn was an official of NUPE (a forerunner of UNISON) and he was a Labour Councillor in the Borough until 1983 when he became MP for Islington North.
It is also true that, as now, he was left-wing.
Such of the remainder of Daley’s article around disputes about housing in Hornsey may or may not be true (I was living in Muswell Hill at the time) but is not particularly relevant to Jeremy Corbyn.
It’s true that his brother Piers was at one point associated with the International Marxist Group, which btw Ms Daley was a Trotskyist not a Maoist organisation (journalists really should check their facts) but guilt by association is an ugly thing. And Piers is currently clean shaven and actually a rather well known and respected weather forecaster.
It’s also true that a number of socialists joined Hornsey Labour Party in the period Ms Daley writes about (some of whom from memory had been in the International Socialists forerunner of the current SWP). They got Ted Knight selected as Parliamentary candidate. Ted was a principled socialist but didn’t win the seat for Labour sadly.
Meanwhile Jeremy Corbyn was well regarded in labour movement politics in the Borough. He was instrumental in sorting out what was then Wood Green Labour Club (now Social Club) and the system he devised for canvassing voters was so efficient that it is still well regarded.
As correspondence in the New Statesman has underlined (28 Augus 2015), Corbyn was regarded as an effective campaigning Councillor during his time in the Borough.
In short, he was of course left-wing but he worked hard and to good effect.
Haringey hasn’t had a Tory Councillor for many years now, and the Council, while still determinedly Labour, is rather different to when Corbyn was a Councillor.
As Bob Dylan noted, things have changed.
One thing hasn’t though. Jeremy still has the beard.
Keith Flett is a long term Haringey resident and Secretary of Haringey TUC