Labour general secretary David Evans told staff in a meeting this morning that the poor financial situation of the party means its reserves are now down to just one month’s payroll, LabourList can reveal.
LabourList sources said Evans explained that the finances of the Labour Party have suffered due to lost members and using funds to deal with antisemitism cases.
Voluntary severance is being offered to staff, and it is understood that the aim is to make at least 90 redundant. LabourList has been told the offer is three weeks of pay for every year served.
One source said it was “all kicking off” in the staff WhatsApp group after the meeting, with staffers furious that there was “no Q&A” at the end of the meeting and “no mention of staff welfare”.
Another insider told LabourList: “The big row over the staff cuts will be where they fall.” There are rumours that Labour could scrap political advisers for the shadow cabinet posts not shadowing a Secretary of State.
But party sources say no decisions have been made around this yet and Labour is looking to cut staff through voluntary severance.
The Guardian revealed on Monday evening that Labour would be cutting at least 90 jobs in a bid to repair the party’s finances. David Evans reacted to the leak with anger in a message to party staff.
“I am angry that this has happened because of the impact it will have on party staff,” the general secretary wrote. “Whoever has done this should be ashamed and they have let our party staff down.”
Reacting to the news of staff redundancies, Momentum co-chair Andrew Scattergood said: “This will have terrible consequences for hardworking staff who will lose their jobs, and severely threatens our general election chances.
“Starmer promised competence, electability and socialist policy – on each he is comprehensively failing. We need the support of a mass membership and engaged trade unions to stem this financial decline – and that means we need to be a party that fights for the interests of working people.”
Unite the Union decided last year to cut funding to Labour by 10%, and GMB has suggested that it could make a similar cut. Party insiders have been hoping that the new leadership would be able to attract high-net-worth individuals as new private donors.
Concerns have been expressed over the party hiring, through an agency, between 30 and 50 ‘temporary investigation officers’ who would work in Labour’s governance and legal unit dealing with the large backlog of internal complaints.
Asked about the job ads via recruitment agency Love Success, David Evans has told Labour’s national executive committee: “They are not agency workers, we are contracting a company we currently work with to deliver a service.”