CIPR calls for Labour Party to go further on plans to "clean up Westminster"

The Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) has welcomed the Labour Party's proposals to address standards in politics but has called for the Party to go further in addressing the rules around lobbying. The Financial Times reports that the Party is considering proposals including banning ministers from lobbying for five years after leaving office and setting up an ethics commission with powers to look at Ministers' behaviour.

Last week the CIPR met Labour MPs to discuss our Lobbying For Good Lobbying campaign which is calling for reform to lobbying legislation to raise standards and drive transparency. As part of the campaign, the Institute recently published its Never-Ending Scandal report that found calls for lobbying reform are being ignored.

Alastair McCapra, CIPR Chief Executive

It is encouraging to see the Labour Party addressing the issue of lobbying that has tarnished our politics for so long. Their proposed five-point plan and Integrity and Ethics Commission is a huge step in the right direction and rightly focuses immediate concerns on the actions of those within Parliament and those who have recently left. In a meeting with the Party last week we made the point that the transparency surrounding external lobbyists still needs to be addressed and is missing from these plans. 

More needs to be done to proactively change the culture around transparency and accountability when it comes to lobbying. Our Lobbying for Good Lobbying campaign is calling for a change to legislation to include a register that promotes ethical behavior, enhances public trust, and upholds the highest standards of integrity from lobbyists and politicians.

Yes, the proposals might go some way to preventing another Greensill, but this is sadly just one amongst a never-ending string of scandals that often don’t involve former ministers but do involve individuals from across the political system.

Alastair McCapra, CIPR Chief Executive

About the Chartered Institute of Public Relations

Founded in 1948, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the world's only Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners with over 10,000 members.

The CIPR advances professionalism in public relations by making its members accountable to their employers and the public through a code of conduct and searchable public register, setting standards through training, qualifications, awards and the production of best practice and skills guidance, facilitating Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and awarding Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status (Chart.PR).