Labour Party (Hong Kong)

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Labour Party
工黨
Chairman Kwok Wing-kin
Vice-Chairmen Tam Leung-ying
Mak Tak-ching
Lee Cheuk-yan
Founded 18 December 2011 (2011-12-18)
Headquarters 19/F, Wing Wong
Commercial Bldg,
557-559 Nathan Road,
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Membership (2011) Increase ~200
Ideology Environmentalism
Social democracy
Political position Centre-left
Regional affiliation Pro-democracy camp
Colours          Orange and green
Legislative Council
1 / 70
District Councils
3 / 458
Website
www.labour.org.hk
Labour Party
Traditional Chinese 工黨
Hkpol2.png
Politics and government
of Hong Kong
Foreign relations
Related topics Regional Emblem of Hong Kong.svg Hong Kong portal

The Labour Party (Chinese: 工黨) is a centre-left social democratic political party in Hong Kong established in 2011. It currently holds one seat in the Legislative Council of Hong Kong and three seats in the District Councils.

The party was founded in 2011 by three veteran pro-democracy legislators to consolidate the centre-left pro-labour pro-democracy voices in the legislature. Led by Lee Cheuk-yan, the long-time general secretary of the Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions (HKCTU), the party won four seats in the 2012 Legislative Council election and received about six per cent of the popular votes, making it the third largest political party in the pro-democracy camp and sixth largest in the legislature.

It received a big loss in the 2016 election in which two veterans Lee Cheuk-yan and Cyd Ho lost in the direct election, which left the party only one seat in the legislature, occupied by Fernando Cheung in New Territories East.

Beliefs[edit]

The Labour Party positions itself as a social democratic party with the principles of "Democracy, Justice, Sustainability and Solidarity". It also demands universal suffrage, legislation of competition law and maximum weekly working hours, rehabilitate the Tiananmen protests of 1989 and against the legislation of Article 23.[1]

The Labour Party is the first main party that has declared to put their policy statement on support laws that prohibit discrimination against the LGBT community.[2]

History[edit]

The idea of establishing a pro-labour party first emerged in the 1990s, when four pro-labour pro-democracy legislators, Lau Chin-shek and Lee Cheuk-yan from the Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions (CTU), Leung Yiu-chung from the Neighbourhood and Worker's Service Centre (NWSC) and Tsang Kin-shing from the Democratic Party set up a joint office in preparation of the labour party, but the idea did not realise at last.

In early 2011, Lee Cheuk-yan expressed interest in forming a new labour party, and discussed the details with legislators Leung Yiu-chung, Cheung Kwok-che from the Hong Kong Social Workers' General Union (SWGU), Cyd Ho from the Civic Act-up and Fernando Cheung, an ex-Civic Party politician. Cheung was the first to advocate the formation of a labour party for the labour rights, new immigrants, ethnic minorities and environmental issues in the coming 2012 Legislative Council election.

The Labour Party was officially founded on 18 December 2011. The New World First Bus Company Staff Union, the K.M.B. Staff Union and the Hong Kong Buildings Management And Security Workers General Union under the CTU and Civic Act-up joined the party as affiliated groups. The NWSC vetoed the motion of joining the Labour Party. 20-strong Executive Committee was elected with CTU General Secretary Lee Cheuk-yan was elected uncontestedly by 131 founding members, while Cyd Ho, Fernando Cheung and Yeung Ho-yan became the Vice-Chairmen, Cheung Kwok-che the Senate Chairman and Tam Chun-yin the General Secretary.

The party filled three lists in the geographical constituency election in the 2012 Legislative Council elections, the incumbent Lee Cheuk-yan and Cyd Ho ran in New Territories West and Hong Kong Island and former legislator Fernando Cheung ran in New Territories East. The party secured four seats with all the lists were elected and Cheung Kwok-che returned through the Social Welfare functional constituency. It became the third largest pro-democracy party in the legislature, behind the Democratic Party and the Civic Party.

The party gained its first seat in the district level in the San Fu by-election in 2015. In the 2015 District Council election, the party filled in 12 candidates and 3 of them were elected. On 13 December 2015, the Labour chairman Lee Cheuk-yan stepped down and three candidates, Kwok Wing-kin, Cheng Sze-lut and Suzanne Wu ran for the chairmanship. Suzanne Wu of the Association for the Advancement of Feminism won the election in the end and became the new chairwoman.[3]

The Labour suffered a major defeat In the 2016 Legislative Council election by losing two veteran legislators Lee Cheuk-yan and Cyd Ho. With the retiring Social Welfare legislator Cheung Kwok-che, the party dropped their seats in the legislature from four to only one. Chairwoman Suzanne Wu, who was running in Kowloon East and pulled out from the race in the last days resigned for the election results.

In August 2017, chairwoman Suzanne Wu resigned and quit the party over the internal rift with veteran member Cyd Ho who also resigned from all party offices as a result.[4] Vice-chairman Kwok Wing-kin was elected the new chairman in an intra-party election in November 2017.[5]

Performance in elections[edit]

Legislative Council elections[edit]

Election Number of
popular votes
% of
popular votes
GC
seats
FC
seats
Total seats +/− Position
2012 112,140Steady 6.19Steady 3 1
4 / 70
1Increase 6thIncrease
2016 101,860Decrease 4.70Decrease 1 0
1 / 70
3Decrease 10thDecrease

District Council elections[edit]

Election Number of
popular votes
% of
popular votes
Total
elected seats
+/−
2015 23,029Steady 1.59Steady
3 / 431
2Increase

Leadership[edit]

Chairmen[edit]

Vice Chairmen (External Affairs)[edit]

Vice Chairmen (Party Affairs)[edit]

  • Tam Chun-yin, 2011–2015
  • Chiu Shi-shun, 2015–2017
  • Tam Leung-ying, 2017–present

Vice Chairmen (Policy)[edit]

  • Fernando Cheung, 2011–2015
  • Kwok Wing-kin, 2015–2017
  • Mak Tak-ching, 2017–present

General Secretaries[edit]

  • Kwok Wing-kin, 2011–2015
  • Tam Chun-yin, 2015–2017
  • Lee Man-fung, 2017–present

Representatives[edit]

Legislative Council[edit]

Constituency Member
New Territories East Fernando Cheung

District Councils[edit]

District Constituency Member
Eastern Sai Wan Ho Mak Tak-ching
Tuen Mun Yau Oi North Tam Chun-yin
Sha Tin Chung On Yip Wing

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "This City is Dying 工黨誕生 打破財團壟斷 突破政治操控". Apple Daily (Hong Kong). 19 December 2011.
  2. ^ "Policy Statement - Human Rights (政策綱領 人權)". 19 December 2011.
  3. ^ "袁彌明中學同學胡穗珊 任工黨新主席". Apple Daily. 13 December 2015.
  4. ^ "Hong Kong Labour Party chair makes surprise departure over internal disagreement". South China Morning Post. 23 August 2017.
  5. ^ "Dead end for Hong Kong democracy, so focus on social policies now, new Labour Party head says". South China Morning Post. 20 November 2017.

External links[edit]