Welcome, Guest
You have to register before you can post on our site.

Username
  

Password
  





Search Forums

(Advanced Search)

Forum Statistics
» Members: 1,503
» Latest member: Wileypsype
» Forum threads: 3,036
» Forum posts: 23,518

Full Statistics

Online Users
There are currently 25 online users.
» 0 Member(s) | 24 Guest(s)
Bing

Latest Threads
Conservative Party Leader...
Forum: Party Leadership Elections
Last Post: selinofell197
07-25-2019, 12:04 PM
» Replies: 30
» Views: 8,001
Labour Deputy Leadership ...
Forum: Party Leadership Elections
Last Post: Jack Galbraith
09-24-2018, 12:01 PM
» Replies: 24
» Views: 4,460
Labour Leadership Electio...
Forum: Party Leadership Elections
Last Post: Dan
09-23-2018, 01:49 PM
» Replies: 21
» Views: 3,772
Press Cycle: School Testi...
Forum: The Press
Last Post: Terry Roberts
06-03-2018, 01:48 AM
» Replies: 6
» Views: 2,569
Press Cycle: Child Povert...
Forum: The Press
Last Post: Andy
06-02-2018, 02:12 PM
» Replies: 6
» Views: 2,608
Momentum Totals
Forum: The Press
Last Post: Morgan
06-02-2018, 12:32 AM
» Replies: 22
» Views: 8,530
Lib Dem Speech: Electoral...
Forum: Marked Speeches and Conferences
Last Post: Morgan
06-02-2018, 12:31 AM
» Replies: 1
» Views: 771
Press cycle: Firefighters...
Forum: The Press
Last Post: Steve
05-31-2018, 06:35 AM
» Replies: 11
» Views: 3,482
Press Cycle: Internationa...
Forum: The Press
Last Post: Steve
05-31-2018, 06:35 AM
» Replies: 17
» Views: 5,525
BBC News (July 2000 - Pre...
Forum: The BBC
Last Post: Andy
05-30-2018, 10:31 PM
» Replies: 57
» Views: 26,042

 
  Labour Deputy Leadership Election 1992
Posted by: Dan - 09-22-2018, 07:39 AM - Forum: Party Leadership Elections - Replies (24)

An election is required to fill the vacancy as Labour Deputy Leader.

The Labour Deputy Leadership Election rules are as follows:

Timeline

Nominations are open from now until Sunday 23rd at 1pm 
24 hours of campaigning from Sunday 23rd at 1pm until Monday 24th at 1pm
Players' votes must be submitted before 1pm on Monday 
Results will be declared on Monday Evening

All times in British Summer Time.

Nomination

- Each candidate requires a nomination and a seconder.
- Candidates may nominate themselves or second themselves, but not both.
- Nominations must be made using the following form

Name of Candidate:
Name of Proposer:
Name of Seconder:
Declaration of Candidate's consent:

Campaigning

During the 24-hour campaigning period, each candidate has 6 "hours" of campaigning time to spend. MPs other than the candidates each have 2 "hours" to spend, and may wish to use these to help their preferred candidate. Campaigning time can be spent as follows:

Speech: 2 hours
Canvassing: 1 hour
Poster/Leaflet: 1 hour

Canvassing here means a summary of a conversation with a party member on three policy areas, either in a bullet point description or through a script of talking points the candidate would use.

Voting

Players' votes must be submitted via Private Message here on the forum, not on Telegram, to Dan addie and Roberts. Votes must be received by midday Monday in order to be counted.

The results of the MPs vote will be calculated based on players' factions and influence. The final result will be based on players' votes and the A-Team's assessment of the campaign material.

Print this item

  Conservative Party Leadership Election
Posted by: Addie - 09-21-2018, 12:23 PM - Forum: Party Leadership Elections - Replies (30)

The Conservative Party Leadership Election rules are as follows:

Timeline

Nominations are open from now until Saturday 22nd September at 1:30 pm BST  (as a note for me, that's 8:30 AM EDT)
24 hours of campaigning from Saturday 22nd at pm BST until 2 pm BST Sunday 23rd (9:00 AM EDT both days)
Players' votes must be submitted before Sunday at 5 pm BST (12:00 EDT)
Results will be declared on Sunday evening , time to be announced.

All times in British Summer Time.

Nomination

- Each candidate requires a nomination and a seconder.
- Candidates may nominate themselves or second themselves, but not both.
- Nominations must be made using the following form

Quote:Name of Candidate:

Name of Proposer:
Name of Seconder:
Declaration of Candidate's consent:


Campaigning

In 1992, the Conservative Party rules for selecting a leader were more simple... if not less democratic. Only MPs can vote for the Party leader. Normally this would require the successful candidate to not ONLY win an absolute majority of MP votes, but to also get at least 15% MORE votes than the runner up (so 50% + 1 + 15% of the 272 MPs for a minimum of 178 votes assuming all MPs vote and there are no abstentions or spoiled ballots). If no one wins a majority, there is a second ballot a week later- which of course is not conducive to getting the game moving. So we'll simulate the votes of MPs through "campaigning," just as though you're going out to the party membership at large. 

During the 24 hour campaigning period, each candidate has 6 "hours" of campaigning time to spend. MPs other than the candidates each have 2 "hours" to spend, and may wish to use these to help their preferred candidate. Campaigning time can be spent as follows:

Speech: 2 hours
Canvassing: 1 hour
Poster/Leaflet: 1 hour

Canvassing here means a summary of a conversation with an MP on three policy areas, either in a bullet point description or through a script of talking points the candidate would use. And you can always make promises... though know that it might come back to haunt you later! 

Voting

Players' votes must be submitted via Private Message here on the forum, not on Telegram, to both Addie and Dan. Votes must be received by Sunday, 23rd September, at 5 pm BST in order to be counted.

The results of the MPs vote will be calculated based on players' factions and influence, as well as of any submitted campaign material to help swing along those other MPs that might be undecided. 

Print this item

Shocked Labour Leadership Election 1992
Posted by: Dan - 09-21-2018, 11:58 AM - Forum: Party Leadership Elections - Replies (21)

The Labour Leadership Election rules are as follows:

Timeline

Nominations are open from now until Saturday 22nd September at 1pm BST
24 hours of campaigning from Saturday 22nd at 1pm BST until 1pm BST Sunday 23rd 
Players' votes must be submitted before Sunday
Results will be declared on Sunday evening

All times in British Summer Time.

Nomination

- Each candidate requires a nomination and a seconder.
- Candidates may nominate themselves or second themselves, but not both.
- Nominations must be made using the following form

Name of Candidate:
Name of Proposer:
Name of Seconder:
Declaration of Candidate's consent:

Campaigning

During the 24 hour campaigning period, each candidate has 6 "hours" of campaigning time to spend. MPs other than the candidates each have 2 "hours" to spend, and may wish to use these to help their preferred candidate. Campaigning time can be spent as follows:

Speech: 2 hours
Canvassing: 1 hour
Poster/Leaflet: 1 hour

Canvassing here means a summary of a conversation with a party member on three policy areas, either in a bullet point description or through a script of talking points the candidate would use.

Voting

Players' votes must be submitted via Private Message here on the forum, not on Telegram, to Dan Addie and Roberts. Votes must be received by midday Sunday in order to be counted.

The results of the MPs vote will be calculated based on players' factions and influence. The final result will be based on players' votes and the A-Team's assessment of the campaign material.

Print this item

  Press Cycle: School Testing
Posted by: Andy - 05-30-2018, 10:36 PM - Forum: The Press - Replies (6)

Following the contribution to the debate by the Prince of Wales, are pupils tested too frequently?

Closes 3rd June 23:59

Print this item

  Lib Dem Speech: Electoral Reform Society
Posted by: Rebecca Flair (Unmasked) - 05-28-2018, 10:14 PM - Forum: Marked Speeches and Conferences - Replies (1)

Leader of the Liberal Democrats and MP for Montgomeryshire Rebecca Flair spoke to the Electoral Reform Society on the topic of the British Constitution and Modern British Politics.

Quote:Ladies and Gentlemen thank you all for coming.

Our constitution and our politics are broken, and like all broken things they are in dire need of repairs. We have unelected, unrepresentative and unaccountable House of Lords with the power to make or break a Government’s legislative progress, we have a House of Commons where power is concentrated in the hands of two parties at the expense of the plethora of other voters in the UK, and we have a political establishment in desperate need of reform to break up the old boys’ club. Labour and the Tories talk a good game, but as we have become accustomed to finding out the hard way, what they say and what they do are often two completely unrelated things entirely.

Let’s look at the House of Lords issue to start with. Now to their credit the Conservatives have played it straight with the people, they are quite happy to keep the Lords around despite its obvious democratic flaws because it is a great retirement home and it offers them terrific in-grown advantages with 92 Hereditary Peers and 26 Lords Spiritual who are automatically predisposed to voting with the Tory Party on a number of issues such as homosexual rights. On the other hand the Labour Party claim to be pro-Senate, which is a fantastic development in the fight for true democracy in the Upper Chamber, but the celebrations may indeed already prove premature. Writing in the Guardian the then prominent Labour Backbencher and the Chair of the Constitution and Local Government Select Committee (now Minister of State for Local Government the Constitution), Emily Kennedy, has felt the need to give a public kick to her own party with regards to what she is expecting from any Senate Bill they propose. Her proposals are pretty common sense: a Senate that can’t have its wings clipped by the Commons, a Senate that has more power than the existing Lords, and a Senate that represents the nations and regions effectively. These are all fantastic interjections into a debate that has too often been poisoned by interventions speaking out against people rather than in favour of ideas, but the fact that she felt the need to even make this interjection must surely those of us who believe that the House of Lords must be shown the door.

Luckily the Liberal Democrats have a clear and comprehensive plan that will give the people a properly elected and accountable legislature, elected by regional list PR. The current composition of the House of Lords has the number of peers far exceeding the actual space available for them, the Chamber itself has capacity for 400 individuals, so the number of Senators under the Lib Dem plan shall be set at 400 Senators. Under the Lib Dem plan we shall see Senators delivered to the nations on a broadly proportional basis. England would receive 268 Senators, Scotland would get 64 Senators, Wales would get 44 and Northern Ireland would get 24. The Senators from England shall be further divided based on the electoral regions we use for European Parliamentary Elections. This situation will ensure constitutional parity between the nations to a far greater degree than is currently seen. In the House of Lords the English are massively over-represented whilst the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish are massively under-represented; it is our hope that by ensuring that 16% of Senators are from Scotland, 11% are from Wales, and 6% are from Northern Ireland this will allow for more local viewpoints to be extolled from the upper chamber. The elections shall be delivered under a system of Regional List Proportional Representation, if the SNP get 10% of the vote in Scotland they shall very simply get 10% of the seats. It is essential that in seeking to introduce democracy to the upper chamber we do not stop short and offer something that is good but that could have been far far better. A democratically elected Senate under Liberal Democrat plans would have far greater powers than currently enjoyed by the unelected and unaccountable House of Lords. It would retain the Lords’ powers to draft its own legislation but it would gain new powers including the ability to directly question Cabinet Ministers, the ability to defend its powers from the House of Commons, and the 1949 Parliament Act would be repealed in its entirety meaning that a Senate would have far stronger powers of delay and reflection. An elected Senate is all well and good but unless it has far greater powers than currently allowed to the House of Lords then it will be little more than window dressing, I call upon the Labour Party to ensure that a future Senate will have strong democratic powers to defend itself and exert a degree of political will rather than simply being a PR tool.

Something that seems to have fallen off the agenda recently has been the idea of House of Commons reform, to me this cam be split into two separate sections: Electoral Reform and Reform to the Institution itself. The Liberal Democrats have long stood for proper democratic accountability in our electoral system, the system of safe seats we are currently faced with presents us with a situation where hundreds of seats and perhaps millions of people are for the most part ignored by the Westminster elite during elections. Campaign effort and money is focused on handfuls of winnable “swing seats” to the detriment of the rest of the country. Now don’t get me wrong, first past the post employs the constituency system very well in that it ensures a local link between MP and Constituent, but this system of safe seating creates a disconnect between the party top brass and the millions who vote for them in safe seats as well as a system of “wasted votes” where dissent in safe seats is virtually impossible and voting is nearly completely pointless. The Liberal Democrat position is simple, keep the constituencies, reduce the safe seats as much as possible. Therefore we propose a compromise solution, we propose that the electoral system is amended so that instead of First Past the Post it is instead the Alternative Vote system. If an MP gets 50% of the vote then that is completely fine and they have won in their own power in the first round, if not then it is only right that second preferences and the like are brought into effect to ensure that the MP who represents the constituents serves at the will of more than 50% of the population in their seat. The Alternative Vote system would not make it a case of vote for Labour to keep out the Tories, you could vote Green, Liberal Democrat, continuity SDP or any other party as your first choice and as long as you rank Labour above the Tories or vice versa you will still be keeping your least preferred candidate out of office whilst giving your most preferred candidate the best possible chance at being elected.

Now the other issue with the House of Commons is that nobody trusts their MPs, we’ve had scandal after scandal paraded through the newspapers with cabinet officials sacked in disgrace, Cash for Questions, and the back to basics scandals of the last Conservative Government, the people want action to restore faith in politics and it is time that we give it to them. For all his faults Harold Saxon had his finger on the pulse when he called for cross-party talks on the sorting out of this issue, weeding out politics to create a generally better atmosphere and restore trust will take action from all political parties. Recall elections, if managed properly, are a fine idea that will enable the British people to pass judgement on their MPs if they are found guilty of criminal misconduct. However I believe that this course action is merely one of many that we must take to restore the public’s faith in politics and politicians. I have been pleased to see the Conservative Party pushing a commission for reforming the way political parties are financed, allow me to be the first to offer up a couple of suggestions: Spending limits for political parties, donation reform so that political parties have to make public their large donors, and have political parties publish their accounts so we can see where their money is coming from and where it is going. These simple acts of transparency will send an incredibly strong message to the people that we have nothing to hide and to politicians that there is nowhere to hide. Further to this we need to be stronger in holding our Government to account. When the Trevitt scandal rocked the nation the opposition could do little but speculate in a manner that led to a gross misrepresentation of the truth leaving all with egg on their face and potentially damaging the careers of the Government Whips who were falsely accused of wrongdoing. We need to strengthen the House of Commons Select Committee system so that it can hold individual Government Ministers to account far more effectively, a new Standards Committee should be established to look solely upon MPs and Ministers and whether their actions and alleged actions do represent a breach of the standards we expect from our MPs. These standards should be codified into a single document that should represent the basic terms and conditions for MPs and Ministers if they wish to continue to serve in public life. Breaching these terms should carry severe penalties for the individuals in question and such a matter could be added to the Recall of MPs powers proposed by the Conservative Party. These individual reforms may seem like little fixes, but taken together they represent a revolution in allowing backbenchers to hold Government to account and allowing the people to hold MPs to account. These proposals form the main proposals that the Liberal Democrats shall continue to push for as part of our drive to clean up British politics.

So in conclusion my friends, the Liberal Democrats recognise that the UK’s democracy is broken. We alone recognise the need for an elected, representative, and more powerful upper chamber, a more representative House of Commons, and restoring the people’s trust in their politicians and elected representatives. This road will not be an easy one to walk down, there will no doubt be opposition from the two main parties on the Commons electoral system reforms, there will no doubt be opposition from the Tories and some in Labour over our plans for a truly democratic Senate with more powers to look after itself and the British people and we all know that the Lib Dem plan for cleaning up politics are incredibly strong and will surely rile up MPs who believe that they are above proper scrutiny of their actions. But the fact of the matter is these are fights we must be prepared to have and simply must win if we are to make our democracy more accessible to the people that matter, the voters. Our Lords are unelected and unaccountable but that has made them unrepresentative as well, they are Bishops, Hereditary Peers and men and women who have given great service to political parties for the most part. How many Life Peers are former Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet Ministers? The House of Commons may be elected, but when half of the country’s opinion hardly matters because they can’t win then is that really all that much better? Our MPs may be fine and upstanding individuals nine times out of ten but if we allow one of our MPs to do as Solomon Trevitt did then they will drag down the rest of us with a bad reputation, damaging the people’s trust in politicians even further. My friends the Lib Dems are committed to fighting for these reforms and we are committed to implementing them as soon as we are able to. Thank you.

Print this item

  Press Cycle: Child Poverty
Posted by: Steve (Unmasked) - 05-28-2018, 03:03 PM - Forum: The Press - Replies (6)

What more should be done to reduce child poverty?

Closes 31 May at 23:59

Print this item

  Press cycle: Firefighters Pay
Posted by: Steve (Unmasked) - 05-26-2018, 11:07 AM - Forum: The Press - Replies (11)

Should firefighters get a 40% pay rise?

Closes 30 May 23:59

Print this item

  Press Cycle: International Development
Posted by: Steve (Unmasked) - 05-26-2018, 10:47 AM - Forum: The Press - Replies (17)

"With the government publishing plans on foreign aid, are you confident the extra money being spent is being spent well?"

Closes 30 May 23:59

Print this item

  Lib Dem Speech: Federation of Small Businesses
Posted by: Rebecca Flair (Unmasked) - 05-25-2018, 07:57 AM - Forum: Marked Speeches and Conferences - Replies (1)

Ladies and Gentleman,

Thank you for your warmest of welcomes, it is a true privilege to be here at the Federation of Small Businesses to unveil the Liberal Democrats’ jobs policy in response to the recent economic developments.

This past year has been tough for business, in December of last year the World watched and wept as terrorists flew planes into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon whilst similar attacks were carried out elsewhere in the World, notably in France. These actions have destabilised the global economy leading to an economic slowdown, and in some cases an actual recession. I believe that it is a great testament to the moderation showed by the Labour Party under Chancellors Brown, Manning, and Thomas that the United Kingdom has avoided recession. The Institute of Directors have got it spot on when they say that had the purse strings been loosened and we had run a deficit as the Tories suggested we would have been in far more dire straits. It is good to see that the Labour Party have truly abandoned the policies of failure that led to the Winter of Discontent and an eighteen year spell of Tory rule, even if the Conservative Party seem dead set on resurrecting that old way of doing things.

We are yet to see a plan from the Government to tackle jobs, I do not doubt that we shall see it in four months when the Budget comes to pass, sadly we have seen the Conservative Plan and it is a truly awful one. When combined with their manifesto commitments the Conservative Party would run a budget deficit of no less than £11bn without cuts to other spending departments or tax rises for the very poorest in our society as in the VAT. Taken independently the Conservative Plan has some good ideas in it, their manifesto commitment to raise the income tax threshold to £10,000 will raise millions out of tax altogether allowing them to focus their finances on other areas such as food, electricity and rent. However even these policies must be handled with care as they represent an enormous drain on the Exchequer that cannot then be used to fund areas like education which will be essential to ensuring that economic growth is sustained and that wealth and income are more equal across the nation. People say that with a bit of hard work anyone can escape the poverty trap and whilst this is true to a degree, education is the key to making a wholesale difference to everyone’s lives, we cannot compromise funding to key Government services as part of a populist giveaway.

But when we get passed the good ideas that could be worked on by all parties we see a Conservative Party plan that is sorely lacking in any kind of thinking. As I said, there is an £11bn deficit in their current spending and taxation plans which represents a solid £35bn worsening of the national finances. But it is not just the deficit that is alarming, what is truly alarming is their response to the jobs crisis which is gripping our nation. The Tory response can be simplified into three basic steps, they want to create a National Investment Bank, they want to reduce the risk when it comes to investment, and they want to increase investment into research and development. None of these plans are costed and none of these plans can be funded without more debt and more deficit which has been stated to cause us even more economic hardship anyway, something the Shadow Chancellor neglected to mention when she spoke to the very people who said it in the first place. A National Investment Bank is a nice theoretical idea, indeed if the Conservatives were not already committed to an £11bn deficit I may even be able to stand here and call it a stroke of genius by the Shadow Chancellor. However sadly we have no idea how much money they will be able to spend, under what conditions and where they will be able to spend it, or indeed when it will actually be set up in the Conservative Plan. If they give it a pittance, or even a couple of billion pounds, it will fail to have any measurable impact unless it is concentrated in one area to the detriment of the rest of the country. Their Risk Reduction Scheme is little more than a subsidy for already rich investors, if they win they win massive returns and if they lose the hypothetical Tory Government would foot the bill, a real return to form for the party of the rich. To put it simply, we cannot trust the Conservatives to deliver good governance and jobs to the UK because we do not know what their plan encompasses for the national finances.

Ladies and Gentlemen where the Conservatives fall short it comes to the Liberal Democrats to provide a visionary alternative and a constructive opposition to the Government, indeed it falls to us again to do this when it comes to jobs. Employment is one of the best ways to escape poverty and for too long entire regions have been neglected and deprived of this very simple idea. The Policy Paper you have no doubt found beneath your chair outlines our policy priorities and crucially how we will get to these objectives, these proposals are fully costed and shall all be included in the next Liberal Democrat Shadow Budget, indeed should the Government not have passed these policies themselves then they shall be in the Manifesto at the next election.

When considering how best to fix the UK’s labour market we have to first identify what is actually causing the imbalances to begin with. The Institute of Directors believe it is a high rate of tax, the Conservatives believe we have too high a Corporation Tax rate, and the CPI believe it is because we are being outcompeted by other nations with a less than stellar human rights record. The Liberal Democrats believe that to fix the jobs crisis in our nation we must rectify the issue of competition with other less developed nations, able to undercut our labourers through lack of a minimum wage and other regulations; we must re-emphasise education and training at every level, including vocational education; and we must tackle regional imbalances that have been present since the premiership of Margaret Thatcher. These are the aims of our policies. To deal with these aims we have undertaken to pursue four policy priorities: improving investment in our education and skills system, increasing demand for skills that boost productivity, increasing the availability of vocational education and skills based training, and industrial support through grants and infrastructure spending. To compete with nations that have no minimum wage and exploit their workforce we do not need to stoop to their level, we must instead rise higher and find better ways to cut costs and better ways to increase the quality of our output to ensure that we win on price and on quality every time.

So now we move on to examining the policies that we shall undertake to achieve these policy priorities, if you will bear with me I would like to address each priority in turn. The first priority is to improve investment in our education and skills provision, to achieve this aim the Lib Dems have two new policies. Firstly we shall build upon Chancellor Manning’s ‘Apprenticeship Levy’ with an additional two tiered system called the ‘Productivity Levy’. The rate of this levy shall be set at 0.5% for companies with a payroll of 50 staff or more, and 1% for companies with a payroll of 250 staff or more. This levy shall raise an estimated £3.1bn, a fund which shall stay available to all firms wishing to invest in productivity training for their existing staff, teaching them new techniques that will enable them to cut costs. To offset this new cost to business the Liberal Democrats propose a 5% cut to the Main Rate of Corporation Tax (new rate: 25%), an 8% cut to the Small Companies Rate of Corporation Tax (new rate: 10%), and abolishing the starting rate of Corporation Tax altogether. This policy would cost the Exchequer £8bn, leaving a net hole in the national finances of £5bn, or reducing the surplus before investment to £19bn, an option left available to us because the Government sensibly elected to ignore the Conservative Party’s plea for deficit financing in the last Budget. Secondly we shall create the Personal Training Credit, a £700 annual payment to enable unemployed and low-earning individuals the chance to enter training schemes to boost productivity, learn new skills, or simply make themselves more employable to business. A further £300 a year shall be made available to those who are unemployed bringing their annual tax credit up to £1000. This policy shall cost £4bn and shall be funded again by the surplus so sensibly maintained by the Government.

The second policy priority for the Liberal Democrats is to ensure that we improve employer demand and usage of skills to boost productivity. To do this we would create a new Productivity Commission to support employers to drive up workplace performance in the UK. This Commission would advise companies on how best to deploy their resources to get the best returns for their investments in people. We don’t need to give millionaires handouts worth many more millions to safeguard their precious investments like the Tories want to, we need to persuade businesses to invest in their employees current and future. If the least of us succeed, from the very bottom of companies, that success will rise us and build a company that can compete with the rest of the World. We don’t need Tory trickle down economics, we need Lib Dem trickle up economics to ensure that nobody is left behind and to ensure that nobody suffers from under-employment when they are capable of doing so much more.

The third policy priority for the Liberal Democrats is increasing the availability of specialist vocational training provision. To achieve this we would create Local Enterprise and Productivity Partnerships (LEPPs) and continue investment in Regional Development Agencies (RDAs). Regional Development Agencies do a great deal of good when they give Central Government money to provide incentives for employers to move to regions, which is why we are keeping and growing them, but they are still centrally run. The Government decides what constitutes the East Midlands or the North West, and these regions are substantially bigger than the area of a local government such as a county council. By creating a concurrent organisation such as the Local Enterprise and Productivity Fund we can keep using Central Government funds to build macroeconomic partnerships in entire regions, but we can also allow local areas such as counties the freedom to create more bespoke arrangements with enterprise and any other interested parties they may wish to deal with. The twin focus of the LEPPs will be to entice businesses into their area by providing advice and funding to local projects and entrepreneurs whilst then working with existing enterprises to establish outcome agreements between bodies, such as trades unions, on issues such as productivity and pay.

Finally the fourth policy priority for the Liberal Democrats is that of supporting industries and communities facing decline. We can either manage this decline or we can get them back on their feet and able to compete in the global context again. The first and most basic way to achieve this policy priority, and indeed all of the policy priorities, will be to appoint a Minister for Productivity and Skills in the Treasury. The Liberal Democrat Treasury Team shall be announcing their appointment to this position in the coming week and I look forward to working with him or her on further developments to our jobs policy. In addition to this staffing change at the heart of Government the Liberal Democrats propose that we establish a cross-government framework to identify industries in transition to better allow us to target funds to boost growth and reverse decline. The main focus of this framework will be industries with high levels of employment or low skill requirements as these are the industries most liable to cause economic hardship should they enter decline, low-skilled workers are most at risk of entering long term unemployment and so it is they whom we shall prioritise our help. If an individual remains unemployed for too long then we reach a situation where it is quite conceivable that they begin to lose skills and become unemployable, we are failing as a nation if we allow such a situation to develop.

Ladies and Gentlemen, the jobs crisis is not a new phenomenon, however, unemployment today is far higher than it was under any Government in the mid 20th century. We cannot blame any one party for this issue as they are both equally culpable in creating and sustaining the economic conditions that have led to the decline of manufacturing industries and the decimation of entire communities in certain parts of the country. Whilst the Tories want to play the blame game in opposition and pass out subsidies to their rich investor friends the Liberal Democrats are committed to focusing on the issues that matter, people and their livelihoods. We have a fully costed plan to introduce training tax credits to encourage learning and to establish Government action plans to tackle the productivity problem facing our nation. The Liberal Democrat plan is based on helping people up, avoiding long term unemployment, and providing the skills necessary for people and the country to thrive into the 21st Century. Thank you.

Quote:Jobs and Productivity in the 21st Century

The Issues we face:
  • Competition from less developed nations undercutting the prices of British workers and British business
  • A lack of emphasis on training and education for vocational courses and productivity
  • Regional imbalances that see the peripheries left behind to fuel London and the South East
Our Four Policy Priorities
  • Improving investment in our education and skills system
  • Increasing demand for skills that boost productivity
  • Increasing the availability of vocational education and skills based training
  • Support industries and communities in decline, getting them back on their feet or retraining them for a new job
Improving Investment in our Education and Skills System
  • We would introduce a new two tiered Productivity Levy of 0.5% for companies employing more than 50 workers and 1% for companies with more than 250 employers, creating a fund to facilitate £3.1bn in investment every year for private enterprise
  • We would cut Corporation Tax to 25% for the Main Rate, 10% for the Small Companies Rate, and abolish it for the Starting Rate
  • We would create the Personal Training Credit, £700 for every individual earning less than £7500 to be spent on skills and productivity based learning, a further £300 (£1000 total) to the unemployed for the same goal
Increasing Demand for Skills that boost Productivity
  • We would establish a Productivity Commission to support employers and drive up workplace performance in the UK
  • We would not offer handouts to millionaires by forgiving the debt and covering the risks from their bad investments, the UK is a free market economy and that level of intervention shall have unforeseen consequences
Increasing the Availability of Vocational Education and Skills Based Training
  • We would create Local Enterprise and Productivity Partnerships (LEPPs), these partnerships shall allow local government to incentivise businesses to move to their local area and then allow the local governments to work with the businesses to boost productivity, bringing in business and then allowing it to flourish once it arrives
  • We would continue to invest in Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) allowing less developed regions a chance to catch up by redistributing spending from rich regions to poorer regions, allowing us to boost growth and cut unemployment in some of the least well off parts of the country
Supporting Industries and Communities facing Decline
  • We would appoint a Minister for Productivity and Skills in the Treasury Team, a similar appointment will be made shortly to our existing Shadow Treasury team
  • We would create a cross-government framework to deal with productivity and investment, allowing us to target investments that will benefit multiple areas of Government policy and get entire areas of the country back on their feet with strong financial support. Investments and non-financial support would be prioritised for industries with high levels of employment or low-skill requirements as these are the most at risk of more large scale redundancies

Print this item

  Press Cycle #37: Justice & Human Rights
Posted by: Andy - 05-17-2018, 09:33 PM - Forum: Marked Press Cycles - Replies (7)

Following the rulings of the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights, has the correct balance been found between justice and human rights?

Closes 11:59pm 21/05/18

Remember to bold your tagline.

Print this item