From standing up for shopworkers and tackling the coronavirus crisis, the co-operative movement and its political Party – the Co-operative Party – are working to build a society where power and wealth are shared.
Over the next few weeks, those of us who regularly shop with the Co-operative Group (‘the Co-op’) will once again be asked to vote on continuing the partnership with Co-operative Party.
For over 100 years, the Co-operative Party and the co-operative movement have worked in partnership to build a society where power and wealth are shared. We are the political voice of the co-operative movement, taking co-operative policies and principles from the shop floor to the places where laws are made.
We are your voice at decision-making tables across the country: supporting co-operative ideas like fairtrade, food justice and protection for shopworkers. But for that work to continue, we need your vote.
To keep this historic link between our movement and our Party and to continue the amazing successes we've achieved together, Vote Yes to Motion 9 at the Co-op Group's AGM.
Since last year's vote, we have:
Over a century ago, the individual co-operative societies that make up the UK co-op movement came together to establish the Co-operative Party as their political voice. Since then, these co-operatives have regularly consulted their members and voted on whether to continue their subscription to the Party.
Today, the largest of these co-operative societies is the Co-operative Group (‘the Co-op’), which sells food, funeral care and insurance across the country.
For the past 5 years, the Co-op has held a direct ballot of its members on whether to maintain the subscription, and on all occasions, Co-op members have approved maintaining the link overwhelmingly.
The vote is taking place once again this year, and we are therefore asking for your support.
You are likely to be able to vote if:
You may not be able to vote if:
If you are unsure whether you are eligible to vote, visit https://membership.coop.co.uk/eligibility-to-vote (requires you to be logged in) or call 0800 0686 727.
Being a member of the Co-operative Party (with a purple membership card) does not automatically make you eligible in this vote – though many Party members will be eligible, and will receive a voting pack by post or email.
Eligible voters will receive a voting pack by post or email over the next few days.
You can vote online until Monday 1 June 2020 at 12PM.
The Co-op is more than a shop: it's a critical part of a movement dedicated to changing the way power and wealth are shared.
From being the first supermarket to stock Fairtrade products to their brilliant work on tackling the climate emergency by pioneering the elimination of plastic waste, they show us a different, more ethical way to do business.
Your blue card is more than a way to earn rewards for yourself. As you shop, you are supporting causes in your local community. You are signalling your support for an ethical business that pays its fair share of tax. You are earning the right to make decisions about how the Co-op should use its power. You make the work we do possible.
Your card means you are part of a movement. You're not just a shopper. You're a pioneer.
We've been proud this year to continue supporting the Co-op's campaigns to protect retail workers from violence, threats and abuse. Alongside our continuing support of their Safer Colleagues, Safer Communities programme, we supported the launch of their groundbreaking report, It's Not Part of the Job, with political action.
We ask shopworkers to enforce the law by preventing illegal sales of knives, acid and alcohol, but the law doesn't do enough to protect them. That's why Labour & Co-operative MP Alex Norris recently introduced a bill in Parliament calling for stronger protections for shopworkers and tougher penalties against those who assault or threaten them. He also obtained a commitment from Prime Minister Boris Johnson to meet with him and colleagues who have been victims of violence, like Matt from this video, to discuss this issue.
The Coronavirus pandemic has highlighted how shopworkers are some of the unsung heroes of our society. With your vote and support, we can continue our work to protect them from violence and ensure they get the protection and recognition they deserve.
We have actively championed co-operative forms of economic, social and voluntary organisation. We've promoted co‑operatives as a better way of doing business – using our electoral agreement to influence Labour, as well as working with other parties and Governments of all colours.
Our 26 Labour & Co-op MPs and 16 peers questioned Ministers, laid amendments to legislation and instigated debates on a wide range of topics including:
Click below to tell people you'll be voting Yes to Motion 9 and encourage others to do the same!