Following a complaint to the Conservative Party they sent me their “CODE OF CONDUCT FOR CONSERVATIVE PARTY REPRESENTATIVES” and I noticed something was missing. The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition on antisemitism is there, but only the definition no examples. Whatsmore is that despite it missing in July 2018 this is dated 2017. Quick addition this summer?
What is important here is that the document I received is dated 11 December 2017 but in July 2018 Channel 4 Factcheck found no reference to the IHRA.
So I had complained about Tory MP Michael Fabricant’s tweet were London Mayor Sadiq Khan’s head was superimposed onto a pig. I thought it was islamophobic, they thought I was being “disingenuous.”
With their response they sent me two documents.
- CODE OF CONDUCT FOR CONSERVATIVE PARTY REPRESENTATIVES
- THE SOCIAL MEDIA COMPLAINTS RULES 2018
The social media complaints rules is literally a way to make it difficult to complain about Tory party members social media use as, unless you have that document you wouldn’t know that you don’t complain the same way as you normally would.
Code of Conduct
The code of conduct sent to me was titled in an attachment as; “Code of Conduct 2018.docx” see original here.”
This is the code for “anyone representing the Party as an elected or appointed official or office-holder.” In my eyes this must be the highest level of standards expected, right?
Their code is mainly built around Lord Nolan’s Seven Principle of Public Life. What this is now know as is The Committee on Standards in Public Life. They basically look after the standards expected by public servants.
The main thing of the whole committee is the “Seven Principles.”
- Selflessness – Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest. They should not do so to gain financial or other benefits for themselves, their family or their friends.
- Integrity – Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.
- Objectivity – In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit and facts not on personal judgement.
- Accountability – Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office.
- Openness – Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands.
- Honesty – Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest.
- Leadership – Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and example.
All ok so far these aren’t a bad starting point for the Tories I’ll admit. Whether they actually implies them is something completely different.
After these principles it then jumps to how to complain and the process after that. I was a bit confused as the Labour Party rule book section complaints is huge. So it goes through each and every stage in detail and the sanctions available.
Nothing on actual definitions of any type of discrimination or misconduct show up in the main section.
That’s reserved for the annex which I can only assume was hastily thrown together this summer. I mean if you have a code of conduct you’d want to include what is classed as “Discrimination, Harassment & Victimisation” wouldn’t you? Not bury it at the bottom which first led me to miss it.
The Tories adopted the examples too, right?
So all summer there have been Tory MPs, Labour MPs and the media blasting Labour and Jeremy Corbyn for not adopting the IHRA working definition on antisemitism’s examples.
It’s important, very important to distinguish the two. Labour and Jeremy Corbyn are all agreed on the definition and nearly all the examples. Where they wanted to clarify things by adding in clauses was; when it came to criticizing The State of Israel. Not the religion of Judaism but the State and it’s actions.
They want to ensure that people are free to criticise actions the Israeli government take without being called anti semitic. That’s fair in my opinion.
So after reading through the code of conduct it’s not until the annex in the discrimination section after listing religion or belief as a protected characteristic that they have added;
“[which should be interpreted as fully adopting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of anti-Semitism]”
But what about the examples that their party members and the media have been attacking Labour for not accepting? They are not there. Nowhere, not in this document, not searching their website nowhere.
What is important here is that the document I received is dated 11 December 2017 but in July 2018 Channel 4 Factcheck found no reference to the IHRA. Not one.
So why, at Prime Ministers Questions did Theresa May attack Jeremy Corbyn for anti semitism when her own party is now by definition behind Labour?
Considering they have adopted the examples with safeguards to protect their members from being called racist and her party hasn’t even adopted one example, I think she’s hitting peak hypocrite this week.
Does it matter to the Tories?
The Tories are like Trump when it comes to bad press; it literally makes no difference. Theresa May loses her majority, she stays on. UN Investigation? It’s fine. They don’t care what people think or how bad it looks, they just carry on.
I find it so sad that the important issue of bigotry has been weaponized to attempt a character assassination. It’s disgusting and outright gutter politics.
What does it centre around mainly?
Apparently criticizing the THE GOVERNMENT of Israel for
- Inflicting countless atrocities against the Palestinian people purely because they are Palestinian.
- Breaching international law and steal land from Palestinians to build on occupied land.
- Killing unarmed civilians (non combatants) who are protected by the Geneva Convention.
- Killing medics who are protected by the Geneva Convention.
- Imposing an unnecessary regime on Palestinian civilians by limiting electricity and water.
- Blockading Gaza and illegally raiding boats in international waters.
- Illegally entering airspace
- Never finding one member of the armed forces in the wrong
Apparently this makes you anti semitic to some people. There must be millions and millions if this is the standard they are adopting….
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