Hackney: Labour candidate for council by-election suspended

Hackney: Labour candidate for council by-election suspended

Labour’s London region has suspended the party’s candidate for a closely-contested council by-election in Hackney following allegations of “transphobia“.

Party members were told by email early this morning by Hackney’s borough organiser that “all planned campaign sessions” in the Cazenove ward had been cancelled, including those that were to have taken place today.

A Labour source has confirmed that the candidate, Laura Pascal (front right in photo), has been “administratively suspended”, which means a complaint has been made about her by another party member and a decision taken to investigate it.

The timing of the suspension means there is not enough time to nominate a different candidate in time for the by-election, which will be held next Thursday. This means that if Pascal wins, she will sit as an independent councillor. The source confirmed that Labour will do no further campaigning for her.

Pascal was selected to contest the seat after it was vacated by Hackney’s new directly elected Mayor, Caroline Woodley (front left in photo) following her victory in a mayoral by-election last November.

Labour won all three Cazenove ward seats at the full borough election held in May 2022, but Liberal Democrat candidates finished close behind and have won there in the recent past.

Pascal’s views about biological sex and gender identity were known well before she was selected as the Cazenove candidate and are expressed in a pinned post on X/Twitter, published on 30 July last year.

She wrote: “My embodied reality as a member of the oppressed sex class is experienced in a world where biology has a significant impact. You can believe what you want but I believe that biological sex is a real thing and neither law or some kind of new scientific concensus wld change that.” In her X/Twitter profile she describes herself as “feminist”.

Social media critics of Pascal have characterised her selection as Labour embracing a “new wave of horrific transphobia” and have accused her of “bullying trans women“. In social media exchanges, Pascal has said: “trans women are not female. By definition they are male”.

On London understands there have been multiple complaints about Pascal, including alleged racism as well as transphobia.

Support OnLondon.co.uk and its writers for just £5 a month of £50 a year and get things for your money too. Details HERE. Threads: DaveHillOnLondon. X/Twitter: On London and Dave Hill. Photo from Laura Pascal’s X/Twitter feed

Categories: News


  1. Frances says:

    Labour showings its true rainbow colours. There have been court judgements about being allowed to have opinions. The Labour Party would do well to look at these judgements, as would Greens, Lib Dem’s SNPs etc.

    1. Dave Hill says:

      The Labour candidate would, I assume, disagree with you about her opinions. Leaving those and the suspension aside, there were already reasons why Labour might have feared losing this seat. There’s a piece in progress which will look at those.

    1. Dave Hill says:

      Hi Rebecca. Because nominations have closed and the ballot papers are printed, Laura Pascal is still in the contest as the Labour candidate, which means you can still vote for her (assuming you live in the ward). However, if she wins she will sit as an Independent until and if Labour lifts its suspension.

  2. Andrea Gillibrand says:

    I hope she does win and sits as an Independent. Frankly I think she would be better off without the baggage of being a member of the Labour party. She’ll get plenty of support from others in the wider community.

  3. Mrs Love says:

    Another woman punished by Labour for stating facts that the majority of people know to be true. It would be laughable if it wasn’t so scary. This is the reality of UK Labour.

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