The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)’s draft report into allegations of antisemitism in the Labour Party is “imminent,” the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM)’s national secretary Peter Mason speculated.
The equality watchdog launched a formal investigation last May to determine whether the party had unlawfully discriminated against, harassed or victimised Jews.
Mason discussed the row during a Labour First event with the JLM vice chair and former MP Ruth Smeeth, which was live-streamed on Facebook on Thursday.
The councillor at Ealing Council told the event: “Under section 20 of the Equalities Act, the EHRC will give the Labour Party the report. We think that’s quite imminent, and the Labour Party have 28 days in which they can respond.
“When that happens, the Labour Party’s got a couple of options. It has the ability to put up its hand and say ‘fair cop. This is on us. It’s our fault. We think that we are happy to accept your recommendations and therefore we are going to enter into a private agreement with you’, a section 23 agreement, which effectively prevents the publication of the report, and the Labour Party could sign up to those recommendations.
“From our perspective and what we’ve said to the party very clearly, and what I think the party would want to say, it’s not a time for a private section 23 agreement. We need the report published. We need to have the full and documented conclusions of the EHRC because it’s going to take a herculean effort on behalf of the leadership whether that’s Keir or the general secretary to really undo some of the things that have started to happen.”