Labour and Co-operative (often abbreviated Labour Co-op) describes those candidates in British elections standing on behalf of both the Labour Party and the Co-operative Party, based on a national agreement between the two parties.
This article is outdated. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information.(January 2011)
Although many Labour Party candidates, and over 200 of the current Parliamentary Labour Party, are members of the Co-operative Party, including Ed Miliband and most colleagues from his Shadow Cabinet, only those candidates who have been officially endorsed by both parties may use the designation Labour Co-operative — 44 candidates in the 2010 elections of which 28 were elected, including the Shadow Chancellor of the ExchequerEd Balls. Only Labour Co-operative MPs and peers belong to the parliamentary Co-operative Party group.
At a local level, where wards may elect more than one councillor, only those where all candidates are supported by the Co-operative Party may use the designation on ballot papers and leaflets. In the list systems used for elections to the European Parliament, Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and London Assembly, the designation has not been used. This convention has been adopted ostensibly to avoid confusion between a mix of candidates that could lead to a reduction in the Labour vote. Nevertheless, there have been Labour Co-operative candidates in the single-member constituencies in those bodies and the Co-operative Party continues to support and promote constituency and list members of those assemblies and the House of Lords.