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Labour Conference Tuesday, 29 September, 1998, 13:26 GMT 14:26 UK
'It's cool to care'
McDonagh
Margaret McDonagh: Will complete modernisation of Labour
The new general secretary of the Labour party has told its annual conference of the need to continue changing and growing.

Margaret McDonagh, Labour's first female general secretary, told delegates they "were custodians of the party".

The time for change

She said: "Now is the time to allow the energy for change to grow.

"And let the people know for the first time, it is cool to care."

The general secretary told delegates she wanted to complete the modernisation of the party.

It was up to every single member to create sense of community and belonging to make the changes work.

She said: "To make the party even more democratic.

"To make it a party, whose members from bottom to top, are involved in its decisions. And a party where politicians still listen to what we have to say and are one with us.

'Broaden the base'

"To achieve all this we need to continue to broaden our base."

Labour party branches needed to be party of the community, she said.

Ms McDonagh said: "We need to be proud to ask our friends and neighbours to join us.

"We should make them feel welcome. We should help them belong. That's the kind of party I want.

"A party that welcomes everyone - whoever they may be. "I want us to be a party that really values its members."

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24 Sep 98 | Labour Conference

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