Pudsey Constituency Labour Party has recently opened applications to be the Labour candidate for Parliament in the next general election, writes Damon Cooper.
The party has opted for an all woman’s short-list with Trade Unionist Jane Aitchison and Salma Arif, councillor for Gipton and Harehills, among the first to publicly announce their bids.
At the last General Election, this was a hotly contested seat where previous Labour candidate Ian McCargo lost to Stuart Andrew, Conservative MP for Pudsey, by 331 votes.
Ms Arif described herself as a ‘proven winner’ having won 79% of the vote in 2016 to become councillor for Gipton and Harehills whilst Jane Aitchison is currently the TUC President for Leeds and has been endorsed by popular Guardian columnist Owen Jones, who thinks Parliament ‘needs more brilliant socialists’ like her.
In 2016, Leeds franchise of Nisa-Nashim, a Jewish Muslim women’s group was co-founded and launched by Ms Arif to foster better understanding between two communities and has seventy members. The councillor has already been on the doorsteps and listening to local voices with local party branches in Calverley and Farsley, Pudsey and Guiseley.
Ms Aitchison recently supported An Afternoon with Richard Burgon ,which was set up by the newly launched Leeds Trinity Labour Society in Horsforth. Both candidates attended an event highlighting period poverty in Pudsey.
Would you want to stand up with Labour for Pudsey in Parliament? Anyone who has been a member for at least 12 months can request an application pack. Deadline for applications is Sunday 18th February at 12noon, interviews to take place on: Monday 12 and Tuesday 13 March. Closing date for all postal ballots is Friday, April 6 at 5pm.