'Bulling, misogyny and toxic culture' in Liverpool Labour Party, report finds

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The Labour Party in Liverpool has been accused of bullying, misogyny and having a "toxic culture".

After a government inspection that resulted in Whitehall commissioners overseeing the city council, the national Labour Party has been carrying out its own investigation into the local branch.

The investigation, led by Liverpool-born former MP David Hanson and seen by the LabourList website, reportedly claims evidence of "misogyny and a lack of tolerance endemic" in the city group and “dysfunctional governance running throughout the organisation”.

Mr Hanson's review, based on 77 written submissions received by the Panel and 53 interviews with 60 individuals, concludes: “We need nothing more than a complete reset of Liverpool’s Labor Party".

Mr Hanson recommends that Labour nationally takes over candidate selection processes in Liverpool until June 2026. It also recommends the party fast-track outstanding complaints in the region.

The review was launched after local government inspector Max Caller revealed a number of failures and a toxic atmosphere within Liverpool Council, which has been run by Labour since 2010.

Bullying, intimidation, “dubious” deals and “jobs for the boys” were amongst the themes in the Caller inspection which was initiated in December 2020 after a series of arrests linked to the council for fraud, bribery, corruption and witness intimidation.

Joe Anderson, the then elected mayor of Liverpool, was among those held.

In their response to the Caller Report, Liverpool City Council accepted that Government commissioners will oversee some departments and sets aside £1m to improve the highways and regeneration departments that came in for criticism.

There may also be a reduction in the number of councillors and elections only once every four years.

Councillors have also voted to hold a referendum on whether to keep the elected mayoral role, or go back to the traditional council leader model.