The London Labour Regional Conference adopted a motion calling on the London mayor and GLA to launch a co-operative commission.
Proposed by the London Co-operative Party, the motion was seconded by the Unison Greater London Branch. It calls on the mayor and GLA to convene a co-operative commission for London, comprising representatives of co-operatives, trade unions, councillors and community and voluntary sectors.
The commission would be tasked with examining the practical barriers faced by co-operatives in London and recommending measures to support doubling the size of London’s co-operative sector. To this aim, the motion asks the mayor and the GLA to make funding, resources and staff available for the commission to gather evidence, prepare, publish and promote its findings.
London is home to over 600 co-operatives. According to the motion, the commission would examine the obstacles holding back the sector and suggest ways to support it to enables more co-ops to be set up, in line with the ambition contained in the Labour’s last general election manifesto to double the size of the co-op economy.
Co-operative commissions have already been set up in in Wales and Greater Manchester by Labour administrations. The motion also suggests that the mayor and GLA seek advice from counterparts in Cardiff and Greater Manchester as well as the Co-operative Party national office on the composition and organisation of such a commission.
Introducing the motion to the conference, Ben West of the London Co-operative Party Executive Committee said: “This motion calls for the Mayor to convene our own co-operative commission for London, bringing together representatives of existing co-operatives, trade unionists, councillors, and community organisations, to re-think how our city’s economy works, and in whose interests it is run.”
“If the past 18 months have shown us anything, it’s that a return to ‘business as usual’ must not be an option. Londoners deserve better than that”.
London Labour will be writing to Mr Khan to inform him of this motion.