Open Letter to the Secretary of Weaver Vale CLP Michael Garvey

As you are aware, I am legally disputing the “evidence” you have put to the Weaver Vale CLP and the National Labour Party about me. As part of this process I requested a Subject Access Request (SAR) from both the national Labour party and the Weaver Vale CLP. Under the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) the CLP data controller, is obliged to let me have this information. As you appear to have taken responsibility for this role, I would like to raise a number of issues and ask you a number of questions.

In the November 2017 CLP Exec minutes you reported to to the CLP executive committee that you had received a complaint from a neighbouring CLP including several screen shots from Facebook.

Although the implication is that it had been an official complaint, I have seen no evidence that it came via any official minuted meeting of the Halton CLP. After you partially responded to my SAR, I asked you to supply me with this information, but got no response. I raised the question with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) that in your response there was no reference to the original complaint. You told the ICO that it was a ‘phone call’ from a member of a neighbouring CLP supported by an email with nine screen shots. Although I am entitled under the GDPR you have never sent me the email with the screen shots. Why not?

Can you confirm if this was a personal complaint and what was the nature of it? Or did it come via the official party procedure? I have been verbally informed and it is common knowledge that this complaint came from a Halton councilor who is also assistant to Derek Twigg MP. Do you not think it is reasonable for me to know who has made the accusations, and in what capacity she has acted?

I was an active member of Weaver Vale CLP, for a number of years holding various positions, including that of CLP Treasurer 2015-2017. At no time were concerns about my conduct ever raised.

However, there was an unpleasant and intimidating incident in my home (May 2017) by the CLP membership secretary and her daughter. This was raised as a complaint by me with the North West Regional Office (NWRO). Subsequently the membership secretary wrote a number of unsubstantiated emails expressing concern about my conduct. You did not forward these emails to me in your response to my SAR. Why not?

After the July (2017) CLP executive meeting, I wrote again to NWRO to formally complain about the agressive, unpleasant and intimidating behaviour of the members from the Halton side of the constituency.

In November 2017, when my application to rejoin was refused, it was minuted that the refusal was unanimous. At the meeting there were only 14 members of the Exec present (out of a possible 33) including all the members whom I had complained about. These included: the Campaign Coordinator (a Halton Councillor) and her mother, her grandfather (another Halton councillor) all of whom I had formally complained about to the NWRO. Her grandmother, (a Halton councillor), other Halton council colleagues and friends of the family plus members of the Runcorn branches to which they belong were also present. These individuals made up the majority of the members present.

You did not consult the other members of the CLP executive, many of whom know me well. Therefore it cannot be seen as a unanimous decision of the full executive, the decision was only made by the members present on the night, many with a vested interest not to have me back in the party. So my question is:

Do you consider it good practice and in line with natural justice for those members with a vested interest to then be allowed to make a decision on my suitability as a Labour member?

Additionally why was the refusal not referred to the CLP general meeting, or to my branch? This has been standard practice in the CLP. Subsequently my branch wrote to the party condemning the actions of the CLP Exec, and offering full support to me. This letter has not been included in the CLP SAR.

Before the hearing (4th August 2018) you sent out a pack (24th July 2018) to ALL the CLP executive, with data I had never seen and which was in it’s nature defamatory and one sided. Why did you consider it necessary to send a substantial pack of one sided information at that point? You have told the ICO that it was to inform the decision making process. But at this point, the CLP had no part to play in the decision, as it was with West Midlands regional office, and the appeal panel members.

I was not informed until days before my appeal hearing In August 2018 that I had to request a separate SAR from the CLP. I asked for a postponement of my appeal until I could get a SAR from the CLP, in order to have a full set of documents on which to argue my case. This was refused by the party.

In August 2018 I requested a SAR from you, when it arrived it did not have all the data held about me, and in one section you sent me only the nine original screen shots. What you sent to the 33 members of the CLP executive contained a further 44 screen shots, some going back as far 2013, and which is some cases had been ‘liked’ by other members of the CLP and CLP Executive members. The pack you sent to me also had the names of the recipients redacted, but as the ICO has told us this action was both unnecessary and unreasonable.

Had this data already been stored by the CLP, which would be a breach of GDPR. Why was it only produced at the last minute?

If the CLP had not been keeping this information you or another person must have mined my social media data to obtain it. For what purpose?

After you sent me, what I considered to be a partial SAR, I again complained to the ICO. They told me under GDPR all information stored on me must be declared in a SAR, even if this duplicates data sent to me from other sources. You were instructed by the ICO to let me have a full unredacted SAR by the 18th January 2019. You emailed to all the CLP executive to inform them that they should delete the email (including the attachments) you sent to them. You also requested them to let you have any information they were holding on me, by 16th January. The data I am entitled to would include your email request, and, all responses. I know of at least one response and there may be others. You failed to send this data to me.

You were again told in March 2019, by the ICO, to supply a full SAR to me, but you have again failed to do so in any satisfactory way. I have since been advised, by the ICO, that I can now undertake legal action to ensure I have the complete set of data which has been held about me.

It is my contention that as CLP secretary, and Data Controller your actions have been both partial and vexatious towards me and you have failed to meet the legal requirements and obligations as set out in Data protection legislation.

Jeanette Fletcher