Young Communist League of Britain

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Young Communist League of Britain is the youth wing of the Communist Party of Britain.

Branches past & present

YCL Women's Conference

In late 2022, comrades from across Britain attended the first ever Young Communist League of Britain Women’s Conference in Ruskin House.

In the opening address to conference, comrade Aymee Diaz Negrin from the Cuban Embassy "joined us to give a fascinating account of women’s liberation in Cuba. She explored the recent progressive reforms to the Cuban Family Code and the active steps the socialist state is taking to tackle machismo in Latin American culture."

In the Women and Trade Unions panel, "we heard from Micaela Tracey-Ramos, co-chair of UNISON young members; and Helen O'Connor, NHS nurse and trade union organiser. The panel was chaired by NEU rep Sarah Green.[1]

YCL women 2021

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Back Laura Dickinson, Georgina Andrews, Maise Riley, Maryam Pashali, Holly Vallender, Leigh Nugent

Front Jade Welburn, Hannah Phillips

2021 YCL conference attendees

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Back Robin Talbot, Johnnie Hunter, Laura Dickinson, Matthew Waddell, Robert Daw, Leigh Nugent, Daniel Roantree, Nathan Czapnik, Michael Quinn,Khalid Talati, Sam Fury, Georgina Andrews, Philip English

Foreground Danny Jennings, Jade Welburn, Daoud Hamdani, Hannah Phillips, Joseph Weaver, Judith Cazorla-Rodenas, Morgan Horn, Peter Stoddart, Holly Morcos, Maise Riley, Nathan Hennebry.

YCL/RedTek camp, 2020

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Back row, Bee Bentall, Hannah Phillips, Fredi Gentz, Shea Stewart, Leo Pac, Robert Daw

Front row: Sian Abigail Bradley

2021 Central Committee

The 50th All-Britain Congress of the Young Communist League of Britain took place at Ruskin House in London across Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd August, with over one hundred delegates, observers and volunteers in attendance over the weekend. On the Sunday, twenty members were elected to the new Central Committee of the Young Communist League of Britain. This increase to twenty, from a previous leadership of nine, reflects the vast growth of the YCL which has more than tripled in size, just shy of 500 members, since their 49th Congress took place.

Under the YCL Constitution, which was updated at the Congress, the new Central Committee is entrusted with putting into practise the decisions, policies and priorities of the Congress over the next two years and to continue the essential work of building the YCL.

The new Central Committee met online for training and collective discussion on September 11th 2021 and held its first full meeting the following day on September 12th 2021. As its first task the Central Committee designated roles and elected new officers to serve the League in carrying out the decisions made at its Congress. This included General Secretary, Johnnie Hunter, stepping down as Editor of Challenge and passing that role on to Nathan Czapnik, who we welcome with praise and open arms!

The full list of comrades elected as officers are as follows:

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The new Central Committee would like to take the opportunity to thank the 50th Congress and the entire membership of the League for the trust and faith which has been placed in them. The Central Committee promises to do their utmost to carry out their duties with the energy and diligence expected of members of the YCL.[2]

YCL at IBMT

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Daoud Hamdani, Robert Streader, Robin Talbot, Johnnie Hunter, Alex Gordon, Jessica Duggan, Harry Hoar.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee is responsible for implementing the decisions, policies and priorities of the membership over the two years for which it is elected.

It is responsible to Congress and meetings of the Central Committee, which brings together the Executive Committee and delegates from Branches.

In addition, Johnnie Hunter is Editor of Challenge, the magazine of the YCL.

Robin Talbot is officer for international work.

Peter Stoddart is officer for student work.

  • These members were co-opted by the Central Committee in October 2019.[3]

2018 leadership

Our 49th Congress on 24 November 2018 elected a new Executive Committee to carry out its decisions, policies and priorities over the next two years.

The following comrades were elected to the Executive Committee at Congress:

The new Executive Committee held its first meeting on 20 December 2018. As its first task the Executive Committee elected new officers to serve the League in carrying out the decisions of Congress. The following comrades were elected to the positions below:

Sochi, October 2017

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YCL delegation

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Owain Holland, Robin Talbot, Daoud Hamdani, Johnnie Hunter, Harry Warren.

Meeting Ukraine communist

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Owain Holland, Johnnie Hunter with Mikhail Kononovich General Secretary of the Komsomol of Ukraine.

2018 YCL gathering

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Matthew Waddell, Peter Stoddart, Robin Talbot, James Meechan, Jamie Lee Robinson-Woods, Gary Steele, Rory Pryde, Daoud Hamdani, Johnnie Hunter.

YCL 2015 leadership

The Young Communist League of Britain’s new Executive Committee met for the first time over the weekend since the last Congress. Elected to the EC in December at our 47th Congress in January 15 were Laura-Jane Rossington, Julian Jones, Ryan Boyle, Robin Talbot, Calum Baird, Daragh O'Neill, Johnnie Hunter, Daoud Hamdani, Owain Holland and Zoe Hennessy.

The Executive met in the Communist Party of Britain’s Glasgow Office on Saturday. Zoe Hennessy was elected as General Secretary, Owain Holland as Chair and Julian Jones was elected as Treasurer of the YCL.

Comrades assumed the following roles as officers on the Executive Committee: Laura-Jane Rossington was elected as Women’s Officer, Daragh O'Neill as Student Officer, Ryan Boyle as Industrial Officer, Calum Baird as Anti-Racism Anti-Fascism Officer, Owain Holland as Marxist-Leninist Education Officer, Robin Talbot as Communications Officer, Johnnie Hunter as Challenge Editor and Julian Jones as International Secretary.[5]

Scottish Spring Day School 2014

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Calum Baird, Owain Holland, Zoe Streatfield, Johnnie Hunter, Gary Steele, Ryan Boyle.

YCL Comrades

Young Communist League of Britain webinar April 2020.

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Zoe McKeown, Greg & Joanne, Maria, Laura Briggs, Paul, Raymond Mennie, Aiden O'Rourke, Robin Talbot, Sean Mulgrew, Morgan Finnie, Stiofan Barrie, Claudia Cannon, Stephen Cassidy, Emily Vaughan, Keiran Stewart, Daniel Lambe, Rory Pryde, Peter Stoddart.

LGBT+ Commission

Jamie Perkins reports on the first meeting of the Young Communist League of Britain’s newly founded LGBT+ Commission, June 2020, which discussed the history of the movement in Britain and addressed the question ‘why does the LGBT+ community need socialism?’

The meeting was chaired by Jamie Perkins. For the inaugural meeting, YCL members received a historical lesson from older LGBT+ comrades active within the Communist Party of Britain, speaking about their experiences in the 1970/80’s and how the face of LGBT+ activism and agitation has changed over time.

The first speaker was Steve Johnson, of the Communist Party’s (CP) South London branch, who spoke about his youth as a gay man and joining the YCL in 1972. Speaking about the first motion passed in support of homosexuals as an oppressed minority, he recalled how certain members were surprised at the fact it was passed unanimously. During this time period the discussion around gay rights became heightened in the YCL due to the perceived attitudes surrounding homosexuality in socialist countries, which caused contradictions with the progressive trends of Britain.

The next comrade to speak was Andy Chaffer of Birmingham CP, who recalled the struggles the LGBT+ community faced during the AIDS/HIV pandemic under Thatcher.

The final speaker, Yvonne Washbourne, also of Birmingham CP Branch spoke of her time fighting with the Gay Liberation Front and the Women's Liberation Front, mentioning how it was the changes in trade union policy that have paved the way for lesbian and gay rights. After a robust discussion about the issues raised, in which YCL comrades shared their own opinions and experiences, the meeting was drawn to a positive close. [6]

Pro-China

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References