During last autumn I spent some time talking to various groups of Tower Hamlets Labour members about their own personal values. I had sets of cards with words and took them through some exercises to choose the words that really meant something to them in terms of how they tried to live their own lives.
You can see from this wordle that the people I spoke to believed in public service, integrity, hard work and serving their community. Words like participation, dedication, service and community came through from every participant.
The connection between personal values and their Labour politics is there too. Equality, tolerance, diversity, fairness, optimism – the basis of personal beliefs that lead to political action.
Family, faith, freedom. Values at the core of what motivated our Labour members. Not values or words that we can leave to those on the Right. Freedom came through especially strongly from Bangladeshi participants, faith and family were important to women and men, Christian and Muslim.
Most of the people I was able to speak to were over 25 – it would be interesting to see if a Young Labour group came up with something different.
Honesty, integrity, success – words at the core of our member’s beliefs, part of how they see themselves at their best. That’s something to build from for the future.