SCOTTISH Labour is facing losing vital funding after the organisation which represents rank and file police men and women has threatened to boycott the party's conferences.

Calum Steele, of the Scottish Police Federation (SPF), issued the warning after he said Richard Leonard had failed to "unequivocally" condemn abusive comments aimed at officers which were endorsed by youth activists in the party.

The SPF general secretary wrote on Twitter last night: "Following the failure of @LabourRichard to unequivocally condemn the hateful bile from Scottish Labour Students this evening I will be writing to him tomorrow advising the SPF will consider ceasing attendance at future Scottish Labour Party conferences.

"It will of course be a decision for our national committee but I would be astonished if they would endorse that a penny of members funds could be directed towards a party that continues to tolerate this."

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Steele's intervention followed the organisation Scottish Labour Students re-tweeting a post about a trans pride march in London where activists claimed police officers had unfairly intervened. The account said: “To be clear:  ACAB”.

The ACAB acronym is well-known around the world as standing for “All Cops Are B******s” and is linked historically to protests about police brutality.

A Scottish Labour spokesman said of the "ACAB" tweet: “Obviously this does not reflect the view of Scottish Labour or Richard Leonard.”

But as the row escalated yesterday Scottish Labour rebel Daniel Johnson, one of the MSPs who earlier this month called for Leonard to stand down, gave his support to the police, suggesting he was unhappy with Leonard's response to the matter.

The MSP for Edinburgh Southern tweeted: "I have always admired the way the police carry out their duties and demonstrations and marches. I always make a point of thanking them at such occasions when I can."

Steele responded: "Daniel is a fine fine man. A great example of a principled politician."

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf also gave his backing to police officers.

Responding to Steele's anger, Yousaf tweeted: "Disgraceful. Our officers are on the front line keeping us safe - esp during the global pandemic. When we run away from danger they run towards it, for no other reason but to keep us safe. Every right minded person should condemn @ScotLabStudents for their shameful tweet."

Police parties raise thousands of pounds by charging organisations fees to set up stands at their conferences.

In return the organisations can raise their profile and highlight their needs by speaking to MSPs, MPs and activists and journalists attending the events.

Scottish Labour have been asked for a comment about Steele's warning about the possibility of not attending Labour conferences.