Sir Keir Starmer’s troubles deepened last night after an official party report said a Labour Government should make ‘woke’ payments to countries once ruled by the British Empire to apologise for colonialism.
Allies of the Labour leader immediately sought to distance him from the proposals, blaming them on rogue hard-Left followers of his predecessor, Jeremy Corbyn.
The report, Remaking Of The British State: For The Many, Not The Few, argues the UK should make reparation payments and ‘an unreserved apology to all of the countries of the world that the Empire invaded and negatively impacted’.
The 234-page policy document, which was published last week by Sean Patrick Griffin, the party’s external governance officer, threatens Sir Keir’s plans to rebrand the party around a patriotic agenda.
Sir Keir Starmer, pictured with former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, has new troubles following the official party report
Yet the report carries a foreword signed ‘Leader of the Opposition’s Office, London’ and is subtitled ‘Produced on behalf of the Labour Party’.
It also calls for:The abolition of trade union laws, which would lead to the return of flying pickets and general strikes;The disestablishment of the Church of England;The House of Lords to be abolished and replaced by ‘the Senate of Nations and Regions’;Restrictions on Britain’s ability to declare war by requiring military activity to pass a vote in both houses of Parliament;Abolition of ‘all of the trappings and add-ons of the Monarchy’.
The 234-page policy document was published last week by Sean Patrick Griffin, the party’s external governance officer
It was previously reported that the document also seeks to scrap knighthoods and other honours in favour of a ‘civic award’.
Swap Mr & Mrs for 'Mx' demands Labour MP
‘Mx’ should be used as a gender-neutral alternative to titles such as Mr and Mrs on forms, a member of Keir Starmer’s team has suggested.
Alex Sobel, a shadow Culture, Media and Sport Minister, wants the Government to tell public bodies and private companies to start using ‘Mx’ on forms and documents.
Mr Sobel has also supported contentious trans-rights reforms including the abolition of single-sex changing rooms, toilets and prisons. Women who object are bigots who should not vote Labour, the MP declared. But some Labour MPs worry that issues such as this show that Sir Keir, a former human rights lawyer, is unable to connect with the many working-class voters the party lost in the last Election.
Labour HQ has already embraced ‘Mx’. A form used for job applicants since last year offers titles including ‘Mx’, ‘Ind’ and ‘Misc’.
However, Equalities Minister Kemi Badenoch indicated that the Government had no plans to push for the compulsory use of ‘Mx’.
‘Individuals can decide what title they want to use on forms, without a formal process, and organisations are free to decide the best way of collecting titles for their needs,’ she told The Mail on Sunday.
The document says: ‘Socialists should seek to reorder the British state and hardwire the constitution in favour of socialist objectives.
'This must be a central plank of the Labour Party’s vision to transform the UK.’
The paper comes ahead of a UK-wide constitutional commission which Sir Keir has already announced.
Last night, one of his allies said: ‘The last leadership were always getting reports like this written in order to keep their friends happy.
'Fortunately, that’s not Labour’s approach any more.’
The document caps a torrid fortnight for the Labour leader.
His poll ratings have slumped, he has had to apologise to Boris Johnson for making false accusations in the Commons, and has had to deal with the fallout after The Mail on Sunday revealed that Shadow Attorney General had described Covid as a ‘gift that keeps on giving’ for lawyers.
The reparations proposal follows mounting campaigns from the Left to revisit Britain’s past, including the toppling of the statue of slave trader Sir Edward Colston in Bristol and the National Trust review of its properties’ links to slavery.
Arguing that British taxpayers’ money should be sent abroad to atone for colonialism, the report says: ‘In recognition of the past wrongdoings of the British state, the new constitution should make an unreserved apology to all of the countries of the world that the Empire invaded and negatively impacted.
‘In addition, the British state should set up a reparations fund as part of the constitution, which offers financial assistance to communities across the world that can show loss and detriment as a result of the actions of the British state.’
It adds that payments would come if ‘the British state owed the claimants in question a duty of care’ and if a failure of that duty could directly be shown to have caused a demonstrable loss.
A Labour source said last night: ‘This report was commissioned by the previous Labour leadership. It does not reflect party policy.’