- 5 updates
Speaking ahead of her appearance at the TUC conference, Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman said at a local level the relationship between the party and the trade unions is "in practice, not working at all".
She added there is not much connection between the party and members at this level and "that is what Ed Miliband wants to change".
Labour leader Ed Miliband has said "nobody should be proud" of the candidate selection process in Falkirk, adding he wanted to put the relationship between the party and the unions on a 21st century footing.
He address the TUC conference tomorrow.
Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has rejected suggestions a cut in union funding would mean financial meltdown for Labour.
Speaking to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, he said: "For us as parties, we've fundamentally got to change the way we operate if we are to make our parties relevant in the 21st century.
"Part of that involves making sure we've got a better connection with our communities and our people. I think the trade union link gives us a huge head-start over other parties in that respect, because it gives us a direct link to three million working people.
"What we are seeking to do is to ensure that we've got a better link to individual members."
Mr Umunna added: "Undoubtedly, we are going to take a hit in terms of our finances, but that doesn't mean that it isn't the right thing to do."
A bitter battle over funding reforms could boost Conservative Party support and help keep David Cameron in Downing Street, Labour's deputy leader Harriet Harman will warn trade union leaders.
Speaking tonight at TUC Congress in Bournemouth Ms Harman will say how "disappointed" she was by the GMB's decision to reduce Labour party funding by over £1 million.
Deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman will issue a plea for unity to union leaders at the annual TUC gathering.
Ms Harman will urge TUC members to unite behind Ed Miliband's plans to reform their historic links with the party, or risk a Tory general election victory.
Her speech comes amid ongoing hostility surrounding the proposed changes, and the continued fallout from the Falkirk selection-rigging scandal.