Labour Suspension – The evidence shows I am not guilty
Last night, 12 days after I was suspended by Labour HQ, and following several requests, I finally received their evidence, which actually shows I am not guilty of the allegations.
I have today sent them the reply below.
As always, I will update this Blog with developments.
I reply to your email below, and make the following points.
1 I received this email 12 days after being suspended from the Labour Party. During the intervening period I sent several emails, without receiving adequate responses. The attachment you sent purports to show two Tweets by me that led to the suspension. Having followed the weblinks in your document, I have found the two Tweets posted by other people, and no evidence that I Retweeted them. I attach a Word document with screen prints of the view I have today on Twitter of the relevant messages. You will notice that the Retweet buttons are not highlighted, which would be the case if I had Retweeted them. I therefore conclude that I did not Retweet the messages, and the basis of your decision to suspend me is incorrect.
2 My email of August 27 said “I wish to make a subject access request in accordance with section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1988. Please can you advise the process for my obtaining copies of all the searchable material the Labour Party holds on myself. I am particularly interested in finding out the specific detail of the allegations that led to my suspension, the person/s who made allegations, and the process whereby they were considered before you suspended me from the Labour Party”. I have not yet received a reply to that email, and the evidence you have now sent does not explain who made the allegations.
3 My Twitter profile states “ReTweet not always endorsement”. I often Retweet things I do not necessarily agree with, as part of the sharing of information on Twitter, and I know many other people do likewise. I cannot see why the Labour Party is using resources trawling social media, looking for evidence of alleged abuse, that can be used to suspend members, when that alleged abuse took place prior to the publication of the rules for the leadership election. Such trawling of social media is contrary to a recommendation of the Chakrabarti report. In view of this, the suspension of myself, in the mistaken belief that I had Retweeted derogatory comments about Angela Eagle, would be particularly unfair. As for the other message that I did not Retweet, I cannot see how sharing information about a disagreement between the NEC and a crowdfunder should lead to a suspension.
4 The Labour Party are aware that I struggle with mental health conditions, which have been aggravated by the experience of suspension, and should meet their obligations to me in line with the Equality Act.
5 I am copying this email to X, who was part of the NEC panel viewing evidence, and has argued against my suspension, knowing me to be a loyal member of the party. After 32 years membership of the Labour Party, I find the way in which I am being treated over this suspension to be alienating. I renew the request that the suspension be lifted, without more delay.
Please can I have a detailed reply to all the points here by 5.00 pm on Thursday September 8.