Checked out the Labour Party website lately? If so, you’ll have noticed that one of the changes takes you to a Policy Forum page where you can have your say about any of Labour’s policy commissions. You can make a submission on a topic of your choice, click on the ‘get involved’ tab at the top of the page or comment and vote on other people’s submissions.
If you’re visiting Brighton be sure to say hello to CND. We have a stall there and are holding a fringe meeting on Sunday evening, details below.
TOWARDS A NUCLEAR FREE WORLD
Cancel Trident replacement, support the nuclear ban treaty
Sunday 24 September 6pm to 7.30pm
St Paul’s Church, West Street, Brighton
(5 minutes from the Conference Centre)
Diane Abbott MP
Shadow Home Secretary
Fabian Hamilton MP
Shadow Minister for Peace and Disarmament
International Sec, National Education Union
National Policy Forum
Labour CND has prepared two Contemporary Motions, which we hope Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs) will submit for debate at the Labour Party conference. Please do take these motions to your CLP meetings – if the motions are chosen by delegates as one of the four for debate at the conference and passed, they should become Party policy! Please note there is a 250 word limit on motions submitted for conference.
The deadline for submission of Contemporary Motions is 14 September. It is therefore essential that your CLP meets to discuss this issue before that date. We need as many submissions as possible to ensure that we cannot be ignored by the Conference Arrangements Committee (CAC).
Labour CND recently participated in the conference No Need For Nuclear: The Renewables Are Here, which took place at Conway Hall, London, on 17th June 2017. Below are two short videos, which include presentations by Dr Carl Clowes, Public Health Wales, and Kelvin Hopkins, Labour MP for Luton North.
Dr Ian Fairlie, Dr Carl Clowes, Caroline Lucas, Kate Hudson.
Can Labour change its policy on nuclear new build?
Kelvin Hopkins MP
Labour has promised big spending, not big reform on nuclear weapons, despite an overwhelming call to deliver on disarmament by Labour Party members.
Trident was forced onto the party agenda and a discussion took place at the weekend’s National Policy Forum after almost 50 policy submissions by local branches.
As a result, policy has moved. But not enough.
The Labour Party will now review Trident in a post-election Strategic Defence and Security Review. This must take account of the huge cost of Trident replacement diverting resources from public services.
The Labour Party has also recommitted to international efforts for multilateral disarmament. This commitment should add support to existing proposals, particularly growing calls for a nuclear weapons convention, or ban on nuclear weapons.
But despite progress, policy has not moved enough.
The agreed text fails to reflect the clear mood of party activists who have sought concrete commitments to decommission Trident.
Labour Party members want big reform, not big spending on Trident.
Labour Party members want delivery on disarmament.
It is therefore regrettable that the National Policy Forum has not offered the wider membership a say on this goal. Delegates should call for that debate and vote at the Labour Party Conference.
Labour Party members who want to see a Labour Government deliver on disarmament must continue to organise and campaign for that goal both before and after the general election.
Join Labour CND in doing just that.
The policy agreed at the National Policy Forum on 20th July reads:
With other nations possessing nuclear weapons, and nuclear proliferation remaining a deep concern, we can never be absolutely certain as to what the future security landscape will look like. In July 2013, the current Government published its Trident Alternatives Review which examined alternative defence systems and postures for the UK’s deterrent. Labour has said that we are committed to a minimum, credible independent nuclear deterrent, delivered through a Continuous At-Sea Deterrent. It would require a clear body of evidence for us to change this belief.
Labour recognises the importance of Britain leading international efforts for multilateral disarmament and non-proliferation. Following the action we took when in government, Labour would actively work to enhance momentum on global multilateral disarmament efforts and negotiations, looking at further reductions in global stockpiles and the number of weapons. This would be done in line with our assessment on the global security landscape.
Labour would continue to take a leading role internationally to push the agenda of global anti-proliferation with nuclear and non-nuclear states. This is a vision shared by President Barack Obama and Labour would work with the United States and other allies, such as France, to advance ‘Global Zero’, which seeks to advance an action plan for the elimination of all nuclear weapons. Labour recognises that success of past international bans on weapons of mass destruction such as landmines, cluster munition, chemical and biological weapons.
The NPT Conference 2015 will be a key moment for a Labour Government to show leadership in achieving progress on global disarmament.
Labour has said that the process and debate leading up to the next Strategic Defence and Security Review in 2015 needs to be open, inclusive and transparent, including examining all capabilities, including nuclear. It must also examine the cost implications as well as the strategic necessities, recognising the importance of the defence sector to the UK economy, and the need to protect and develop a highly skilled workforce. To this end, a Labour Government will have a continuing consultation, inviting submissions from all relevant stakeholders, including Labour Party members and affiliates, on the UK’s future defence and national security issues.
The NPF meets on 18-20th July in Milton Keynes.
The report sets out how Labour in Government, should it be elected next year, will be responsible for overseeing a major decision on replacing the Trident submarines while it is committed to nuclear disarmament through the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
We set out why the changed global security environment and current economic climate make Trident replacement unjustifiable.
Almost 50 CLPs have submitted an amendment on Trident and 90% of them want to see it scrapped.
With submissions overwhelmingly in favour of decommissioning Trident and carrying out the UK’s historic nuclear disarmament commitment, it is time Labour delivered.
It is vital that CLP representatives on the NPF submit this issue and represent members by voting for decommissioning Trident and delivering disarmament.