GMB backs Owen Smith for Labour Leader
GMB, the UK’s third largest trade union, today endorsed Owen Smith in the Labour Party leadership contest. The union, which represents members across the public and private sectors, balloted members to ask their opinion on who the union should support.
By 60% to 40%, GMB members voted to endorse Smith over his rival Jeremy Corbyn in a ballot administered by independent agency Electoral Reform Services (ERS).
Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary said: “The Labour Party is at a crossroads. I’m under no illusions that we’re living through dangerous political times – the like of which I haven’t seen during my three decades in our movement. It’s time for us to face up to reality.
“GMB balloted our members because this kind of decision shouldn’t be taken from up on high. We’re a democratic organisation here to serve our members’ interests. I was determined that our members would have their say. And they’ve had it.
“I’ll proudly campaign alongside Owen in the coming weeks and months to deliver on his pledges to end the public sector pay freeze, to support defence workers, to invest in health and industry, and to build an industrial strategy – these are bread and butter issues for the people I represent.
“But we can only tackle them if we’re in government. That’s the end game and I hope whatever the final result, the Labour Party will unite when all this is over. GMB members cannot afford for Labour to be talking to itself in a bubble for the next five years while the Tories run riot through our rights at work, our public services and our communities.”