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IFOW introduces ‘good work’ to Procurement Bill debate

Procurement Bill

Using our Good Work Charter as a framework, IFOW drafted probing amendments to the Procurement Bill for All Party Parliamentary Group co-chair Lord Jim Knight which would introduce good work standards, impact assessments and goals to the Bill.

B. Scott, for the government, proposed the national procurement policy statement as the appropriate vehicle to promote good work as part of procurement. 

However, B.Hayman, for the Opposition, said:

‘My noble friend Lord Knight of Weymouth’s amendments clearly recognise that procurement can be a powerful tool to support public policy goals and targets, beyond just ensuring value for money. We have heard about the Institute for the Future of Work and its research that shows that creating and protecting good-quality jobs provides resilience and promotes well-being and prosperity at every level. Again, that supports the Government’s levelling-up agenda. My noble friend Lord Knight also mentioned how it would increase productivity in this country. Surely that is an ambition that the Government and the Minister share. We believe that promoting good work is a public good that advances national, economic, social and health interests and priorities.'

Lord Knight said: 

"I am the co-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Future of Work, along with David Davis in the other place. We have been working with the Institute for the Future of Work on this good work agenda and have found from the evidence around good work that the more you can increase the quantity of good work in the economy and society, the better the prospects are for people and the communities in which they live. We therefore remind the Minister and the Committee of the importance of this agenda in terms of levelling up, in particular, but also building security, prosperity and self-respect—there is a virtuous circle in play."

The government committed to considering these amendments and the Labour Party picked up on them, with the Shadow Secretary of State for the Future of Work Angela Rayner subsequently developing commitments to promote good work through procurement.

Read the full Hansard transcript of the debate.

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