Labour manifesto: The new pledges

This week on Civil Service World we'll be picking apart the main parties' election manifestos with an in-depth analysis of what they mean for the civil service. Here's a first glance at the new pledges contained in Labour's manifesto, published today by leader Ed Miliband

Regulatory Policy Committee

By matt.foster

13 Apr 2015

Today Labour committed to:

  • The establishment of a new "National Primary Childcare Service". According to the party, the NCPS would match up primary schools with volunteers and extracurricular clubs to guarantee "wrap-around" childcare "in breakfast or after school clubs from 8am-6pm". The NPCS will be set up as a not-for-profit organisation. Labour says funding will be provided by ending government backing of the New Schools Network, the charity set up to support the free schools programme.
  • The creation of a new "National Rail" body to oversee railways. The party says it would create a public sector rail operator which could compete with private train companies on what it calls "a level playing field".
  • A "fully-funded" rail fare freeze for one year, with "a strict cap on every route for any future fare rises". The party says it will give passengers the legal right to access the cheapest ticket for each journey. And it puts the cost for its rail fare plans at "just over £200million", claiming they will be paid for by delaying A27 and A358 road projects "for which the economic case is still uncertain".
  • Handing the Low Pay Commission responsibility for raising the minimum wage above £8 by the end of the next Parliament.
  • Not raising the basic or higher rates of Income Tax, or raising National Insurance or VAT. The party says it will fund a 10p starting rate of income tax by scrapping the Marriage Tax Allowance.
  • Labour has also promised to protect tax credits "so they rise in line with inflation from next year".

Civil service mentions:

  • The manifesto includes two references to the civil service itself. The first is in a section committing to a "comprehensive race equality strategy", with Labour saying black and ethnic minority communities still face "barriers" to careers in public life. The party says it wants to see Whitehall, along with the police, parliament and the judiciary become "more representative of our diverse country".
  • The party also vows to create  "thousands more apprenticeships in the public sector, including the civil service".
  • Labour has previously used its 'zero-based review' documents to flesh out its plans for public sector procurement and the digital transformation of government.

Look out for our in-depth pieces on the ramifications of each party's plans this week on CSW.

Read the most recent articles written by matt.foster - Top civil servants Robert Devereux & Chris Wormald stick up for spads


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