A labour MP has highlighted the threat posed to public services by cuts to contractor expenses to members of the House of Commons. Labour MP Sir Alan Meale described the attack on travel and subsistence expenses as ‘short-sighted’ in an Early Day Motion (EDM). He was one of a raft of MPs contacted by constituents as part of trade body PRISM’S Yes2T&S campaign, devised to defeat the Chancellor’s proposals.
Sir Alan, MP for Mansfield, tabled a motion calling for the consequences of the policy to be properly recognised by fellow MPs. It stated: "That this House [...] understands the importance of workers in this sector who currently fill the skills shortages around the country and in industries as hospitals, schools and colleges and local authorities as well as many major public civil engineering projects; and believes that if the Government persists in such a short-sighted fiscal strategy it will result in undoubted delays and huge failures to essential services provided to citizens.” The EDM was supported by Tory Sir Peter Bottomley.
EDMs are a mechanism by which MPs can officially voice concerns about government policy in the highest court in the land. Crawford Temple, CEO of PRISM, thanked Sir Alan for his intervention.
He said: “It is extremely important that an important issue like this with such huge ramifications gets recognised officially in Parliament so I thank him sincerely for that.
“George Osborne has decided to press ahead with removing this vital relief which we expect to have huge consequences for public and private sector wage bills as employers are forced to make up for the shortfall,” he continued. "However, there is a huge amount of lobbying still to do as we continue to take our concerns to our elected representatives whose job it is to scrutinise government policy and hold the Chancellor to account.”
PRISM’s Yes2T&S campaign is ongoing - go to www.prism.contractors/yes2tands and get your MP to take the fight to the Chancellor.