This is Rob Carr’s response to the questions put to NEC 2012 Candidates by LWN and Lead4Women.
As a candidate to the NEC we hope you’ll find time to answer the following questions so we can share your answers with our members and supporters:
Will you ensure that more Labour women are elected to parliament,including requiring that a minimum of 50% of Labour’s parliamentaryby-election candidates should be women?:
I support the principle of getting more women into Parliament and using AWS is an effective way to ensure equality of opportunity. The 50% ratio of by-election candidates is much more difficult as by-elections are difficult to predict and plan for, with an unpredictable number in a given year.
Will you commit to supporting the continued use of all women shortlists and to their application in seats with a strong Labour majority as well as Labour’s target seats?:
I would support consistency and fairness across all Labour seats and regions without exception.
What will you do to ensure equal and transparent application of AWS policy across the regions, including in Scotland and Wales?:
I would ensure the close monitoring of all regions with an equal proportion of AWS in each of them. To do anything else is simply inequitable.
Would you support the formulation and publication of clear criteria for the application of AWS policy and what would your favoured criteria be?:
I believe that, as I said previously, there should be 50% AWS in every region without exception. I also believe that whatever system is used to select which CLPs are AWS, it needs to be consistant and transparent across the Party.I would favour a lottery as the fairest system.
What will you do to ensure we have a 50:50 PLP and 50:50 Labour administration in Scotland, Wales, London and local government?:
It saddens me that we still need to take action to ensure that 50% of any administration is made up of 50% of the wider population. Nonetheless, I reiterate my support for close monitoring of selection processes and a consistent approach to AWS decisions. I also believe we need to do more to encourage women to become party members and seek CLP posts, as well as standing for election.
What will you do to ensure that the proportion of women in the PLP does not decrease as a result of boundary changes?:
The boundary changes are a massive complication for the process of selection and AWS work. However, if elected, I would lobby for a review of AWS based on post-boundary review structures with AWS applied to new seats.
Will you support our Refounding Labour proposals for changing the party,including implementing a proper complaints process and building a fully funded and organised Women’s organisation in the Labour Party?:
I would support the proposals but am also mindful of the limited financial resource available to the Party at the moment.