New Labour members will be required to sign a code of conduct about online behaviour or face being barred from the party in a bid to tackle a “tsunami of online abuse”. Labour now has 551,000 members, reinforcing its position as the largest political party in Europe, but it has been beset with reports of members engaging in abusive exchanges, particularly with so-called “moderate” MPs who have opposed Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership. The new policy, agreed by Labour’s National Executive Committee on Tuesday, came hours before voting in the party’s leadership contest came to a close. Any votes received after midday today will not be counted.
Ruth Smeeth, a Jewish MP who has called for Mr Corbyn to do more to crack down on abuse after she received tens of thousands of offensive messages – including anti-Semitic abuse, said she was pleased Labour is taking steps to tackle the problem.
Ms Smeeth, the MP for Stoke-on-Trent North, fled the launch of Labour’s anti-Semitism report earlier this year after one of Mr Corbyn’s supporters accused her of colluding with the Right-wing press.