Merton Council

Home Home Merton Adult Education Home Home Jobs in children's social care Home Merton Means Business Home Wandle Valley Low Carbon Zone Home Safeguarding Children Board
How do I contact my councillor?

Agenda item

Notice of motion: Labour motion


The motion was moved by Councillor Attawar and seconded by Councillor Mundy.


The Liberal Democrat amendment as set out in agenda item 25 was moved by Councillor Bailey and seconded by Councillor Quilliam.


Councillor McGrath spoke on the item.


The Liberal Democrat amendment was put to a vote and was carried – votes in favour: 41, votes against: 16, abstentions: 0.


The Conservative amendment as set out in agenda item 26 was moved by Councillor Ormrod and seconded by Councillor Moulton.


The Conservative amendment was put to a vote and was lost – votes in favour: 16, votes against: 31, abstentions: 10


The substantive motion (as amended) was then put to a vote and was carried – votes in favour: 41, votes against: 0, abstentions: 16.




This Council notes:

·         That analysis of the 2018 Local Election results by the Fawcett Society found that only34% of councillors in England are women, up 1% since 2017. Of the seats that were up for election in 2018, 38% went to women, up just 3 percentage points on 2014 when these seats were last contested;

·         That across England, Labour has improved its representation since seats were last up forgrabs, with 45% women compared with 40% in 2014, Liberal Democrat representation up from 34% to 36% whilst the Conservative Party saw a fall from 31% to 29% in the share of its councillors who are female;

·         That the role of a councillor should be open to all, regardless of their background, andthat having a parental leave policy is a step towards encouraging a wider range of people to become councillors, and is also a step to encourage existing councillors who may want to start a family to remain as councillors;

·         That parental leave must apply to parents regardless of their gender, and that it shouldalso cover adoption leave to support those parents who choose to adopt.

·         As of summer 2017, only 4% of councils in England and Wales have parental leavepolicies, according to research by the Fawcett Society;

Council further notes:

·         That Merton Council does offer full parental leave rights for councillors that mirrors thoseof council employees, but that this can be made much more explicit in the Constitution by adopting the LGA Labour Group’s Women’s taskforce parental leave policy

·         That in order for councillors to be able to carry out their duties often they must claim forreimbursement of the dependent carers’ allowance.

This Council resolves:

·         To adopt the parental leave policy drafted by the LGA Labour Group’s Women’s Taskforceto give all councillors an entitlement to parental leave after giving birth or adopting, and to have the full range of rights in the policy reflected in the constitution when the members’ allowances scheme is renewed in February 2020;

·         To ensure that councillors with children and other caring commitments are supported as appropriate, and therefore raise the dependent carers allowance entitlement to the London Living Wage;

·         To notify the LGA Labour Group that this council has passed a motion at full council to adopt the parental leave policy.

·         To carry out a review into how to make being a councillor more accessible so Council is representative of the population of Merton.


Supporting documents: