I am writing to you to ask some questions about the European Parliament selection process conducted in your region. I have been accused by Jonathan Ashworth MP of making ‘cheap accusations‘ as a result of my blog entry about the selection of Nicki Brooks so I am writing to you to try to set the record straight. I am doing this in public, here on my blog, as it is in the interests of transparency of the process.
Two facts are clear at the outset. First is that Nicki Brooks was a member of the original selection committee. Second is that Nicki Brooks was selected as one of the candidates for East Midlands. This leaves a number of outstanding issues:
- Did Nicki Brooks submit an application to become a candidate by 1st January 2013, as all other candidates did?
- Was the decision taken to consider Nicki Brooks as a candidate taken before or after all other candidates had been interviewed? If it was the former, why was she still a member of the selection committee? If it was the latter, is that fair to other candidates interviewed?
- If, as has been suggested by a commenter on my blog, the nomination process was re-opened to allow Nicki Brooks to become a candidate, for how long was the process re-opened? And hence how many people knew that the process had been re-opened? What communication was made with party members to inform them that the process had been re-opened?
- Bearing in mind the gender balance requirements of the nomination process, how many men and how many women initially made applications (by 1st January) in East Midlands? And how many men and how many women were initially interviewed by the original selection committee?
Until these questions are answered adequately then major questions remain about the conduct of the selection process.
I look forward to your reply, which I trust will also be available publicly. Do feel free to write the response in the comments form below this post, or to e-mail it to me for publishing here.
Jon Worth, 24.4.13
The result shows that the self selected candidates did not connect with voters in the East Midlands. The fact it is being quickly swept under the carpet shows that Labour politics in this area is about what you can get for yourself rather than do for the people.
The politicians look after themselves… https://twitter.com/IanAustinMP/status/470691297431658496
I think similar fiddles going on in parliamentary selections by east midlands (regional party).
I attended for interview having been long listed. I was treated extremely coldly and rudely by a senior member of the panel, I am used to rude people in the party but he certainly took the biscuit. Others showed some interest in my application, though I was unable to work out from the interview questions if they had all read it. The questions and interview was over in about 20 minutes. I was given no information whatsoever as to if the panel was reopened but had to wait some time to find out if I had been shortlisted, it could well have been that that interviews were held over a number of weekends. I have noticed in 28 years of activities in the Labour Party that the rude ones are hardly ever out raising funds or door knocking; they are usually eating biscuits and taking perks on the backs of levy paying union and ordinary party members..Is it far worse in the other parties….
Good work Jon, any response from Labour yet …..
As a two fingered footnote to all this Nicki Brooks was elected to County Council on 2nd May, guess what job she has got ….. Vice chair of Personnel and she is therefore responsible for HR and recruitment!
@Gina – no, no reply whatsoever. Sadly not unexpected… 🙁
why was the process re-opened? Because were there not enough credible female applications?
If she applied in the original timetable, did she make it clear before being chosen to be part of the selection panel?
@Andrea – I do not know for sure if the process was re-opened. This is just an issue that was suggested by a commenter on my blog. I hope that any reply from Gordon might shed some light on that.
Great email, Jon. There clearly needs to be transparency in the process and you are right to ask the questions you are doing. I hope in the interests of our party that they co-operate…