The Co-operative Party

How many tech co-operators are also members of the Co-op party?
How could the Co-operative Party assist tech co-ops at local, regional and government level?

I’m a card carrier, but more of a stalker than participating member. I’m not a Labour member. The party could help us by convincing the shadow business secretary that the barriers to worker cooperation are more a lack of coop culture and skills, than legal or financial. Labour should therefore focus its support on the upskilling and deployment of a new generation advocates and advisers who have practical knowledge of worker cooperation, rather than on technical fixes.

Thanks Sion

With the London council elections approaching does that also apply to Labour and Co-operative Party candidates at a local level?

NB although Co-op Party’s members can’t join another political party other than the Labour Party as a consequence of the 1927 electoral pact, many of our members aren’t LP members and prefer the autonomy.

For me it’s less about how the Coop Party could assist existing cooperatives - tech or otherwise - and more about making best use of the extensive expertise that exists within the cooperative sector when developing and promoting policy. What seems clear to me over the last 30 years or so is that while Labour might (just might) like the idea of developing the cooperative economy they really don’t understand any of the details about how to develop, support, create or run these organisations. I’m not a Coop Party member, but I have joined Labour in recent years, like many others, and I’m really quite surprised at the very low level of understanding of cooperative enterprise that exists in across the board in the party. I’m also gobsmacked at the shambolic nature of many of the party’s s-called systems (but that’s another story). If the Coop Party really wanted to build a cooperative commonwealth it should run a major campaign to educate, inform and excite Labour members about the cooperative economy and utilise the assets available to it within the cooperative sector to help design and deliver that campaign and to build proper policy about cooperatives in partnership with the sector.


I’m a member, and getting a bit more involved in my local party recently.
Agree with some of the more sceptical comments here though. If we as a
group did want to have a conversation or make a submission to the Party,
could probably make that happen.

They do have a bit of resource to spend as well apparently - including
their action fund, one of the aims of which is " the project promotes the
work of the wider co-operative movement;", which I think could apply to a
few of our activities.

More details here:



Just found out about this conference coming up on Feb 10 in London.
Is the Coop Party actively engaged here?

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I’d hope there’s also the ability to influence policy development at the local, regional and national level including ensuring co-ops are fairly considered as prospect recipients of government contracts.

I don’t there’s an official relationship, but one of the speakers — Matthew Brown, a Coop Party councillor on Preston City Council, was also a speaker at the Open 17 Platform Cooperatives Conference.