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SWP Internal Bulletin - How the party thinks about recruitment...

SWAPWATCH | 10.11.2011 15:35 | Education | Other Press | Repression

Leaked from an internal members-only SWP 92 page post-conference bulletin published in January.

Recruitment drive

1. The recent weeks have seen an explosion of resistance to the Con- Dem coalition’s assault on education. The radicalisation of the student movement is having an impact on the trade union movement and the anti-cuts campaigns. Over the coming months we can expect to see a massive demonstration headed up by the TUC and hopefully strikes against the cuts.
2. The SWP is at the heart of the struggle. Over the six week period of the student protests at the end of last year we have seen a very large number of people join or say they are interested in joining the SWP.

Day X (10 November) 74 sign ups
Day X2 (24 November) 69 sign ups
Day X3 (30 November) 22 sign ups
Kettle Parliament (9 December) 103 sign ups

The total number of people who joined in November was 92, this does not include any of the forms above. That means over roughly 30 days 360 people joined or expressed an interest in joining. This is the high- est level of recruitment we have seen since 2003.

3. This period gives us a real opportunity to both increase the size and influence of the party.

4. Some comrades are nervous about the possibilities of mass recruit- ment. They believe this has lead to a ‘revolving door’ syndrome - one where comrades join on protests and leave after a short period because they have not been integrated into the organisation.

5. We don’t believe the problems associated with past recruitment drives should be an impediment to launching a recruitment drive in 2011. However we do believe we have to address some of the mistakes made in the past and put in place measures that will give the SWP the maximum opportunities to grow in this exciting period.


1. Last year 1184 joined the SWP.

2. The Party should set a target of 2000 recruits to the SWP in 2011 and we need to campaign to ensure that at least 40% of new recruits pay by Direct Debit.

3. The recruitment drive should be pushed through every layer of the Party.
• Every district and branch must draw up a ‘hit list’ of people they believe it is possible to recruit.
• Every branch and district should have a plan about what level of recruitment is possible and how it can be achieved.
• Every SWP branch should have a Membership Secretary.
• Industrial fractions at national and district levels should also discuss recruitment and think about those we have met in campaigns, strikes etc. Then these possible recruits have to be targeted and progress re- viewed at the next caucus.
• Bigger sales of SW can provide a new pool of possible recruits. We should encourage comrades to sell at college/work/ in their areas and then ask regular paper buyers to join.
• The recruitment drive has to be pushed in our publications.
• Public meetings should be organised across the country in towns and cities where we have active branches but also in places where there is no SWP branches.
• A new membership card should be produced.
• Regular reports should continue to be made to the party on the levels of recruitment.


1. If we are going to expand the SWP, retaining new members is key.

2. We should continue with the process of registering new recruits which we have implemented in the last few months. Every SWP membership form we receive at the moment from the student demos is treated as if the person is asking for more information. Each person is then sent a letter urging them to join, information about their local branch and a copy of Socialist Worker and the Socialist Review. These contacts are then followed up by an email and calls from organis- ers and the local membership secretary urging them to get involved. Anyone who pays a DD or gets involved in their local group/branch or responds confirming they wish to be a member will be registered as a party member.

2. We should organise two ‘Student and New Members’ schools’ – one in London for the South and one in the North. These should be held on Sunday __th March. These should be followed up with local ‘edu- cationals’.

3. Our new book – ‘The case for Revolution’ should be promoted as widely as possible.

4. We should encourage the setting up of school and FE groups that meet up at times that suit the students.

Proposed by the Central committee
Timothy from York proposed an amendment to add “at least” before the figure 2,000 in point 2 of recruitment. This was accepted by the CC and passed by conference



Display the following 6 comments

  1. Just Sick! — God
  2. weirdos — weirdos
  3. the crisis in the swp — ex-swapper
  4. Typical SWP — Luxemberg
  5. Oh noes! — dis-scent
  6. How many members? — Watcher