Labour names all-women seat
Wednesday 22 November 1995
The east London seat of Bethnal Green and Bow has been named as the final constituency in England and Wales to be forced to draw up a women- only shortlist to choose its Labour parliamentary candidate.
The move, first mooted amid fierce controversy six months ago, brings to 10 the number of constituencies that have had all-women lists imposed on them. It marks the completion of the operation of the quota policy in the current parliament.
The scheme has set Labour on course to achieving around 90 women MPs at the next general election, but it has proved highly controversial.
A proposal in May to insist on a women-only list in the new east London seat caused a storm of protest among some local activitists because the selection of a successor to Peter Shore, the retiring MP for the existing Bethnal Green & Stepney, had already begun, while the procedure would have the effect of excluding Asian male applicants in an area with the highest concentration of Ban-gladeshis in the country.
An embarrassed Labour Party was then forced to disavow a London regional executive committee recommendation to stretch the rules by drawing up an all-black women-only list. A local Bengali woman applicant, Pola Uddin, deputy leader of the local council, Tower Hamlets, appeared to have strong backing among senior party figures.
Rajan Jalal, a councillor and another would-be applicant, said yesterday: "I think it's ... an insult to local democracy. The constituency held a special ballot on this issue. More than 85 per cent of the membership supported an open list."
The decision comes less than a fortnight after the Equal Opportunities Commission decided to back two male would-be MPs in a legal action against Labour challenging the quotas. Peter Jepson and Roger Dyas Elliot are bringing a joint case against the party, to be heard at Leeds industrial tribunal on 11 December.
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Rashida Jones speaks out against male-centric porn saying 'women should have sex and feel good about it'
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Putin opponent reveals Russian President's daughter's secret identity
Ball pool for adults opens in London
Gay couple buy JebBushForPresident.com web domain, and refuse to sell
16 Waitrose customers who could not cope with the end of free coffee
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: Phase Co-ordinator for Foundation and Key S...
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: SEN Teacher We have a fantastic special n...
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is an 11-18 all ability co-educat...
£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 6 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...