Unlock Democracy's submission to the Scottish Standards Committee's inquiry into lobbying

Unlock Democracy's submission to the Scottish Standards Committee's inquiry into lobbying

The size of the UK lobbying industry - now worth £2bn - has steadily increased over the last decade. There are good reasons to believe that Scotland has attracted more than its fair share of that growth. As devolution has matured, the Scottish Government and Parliament have become more assertive, and therefore a more important arena for lobbying. This trend is only likely to continue with the prospect of further changes in the future. The lobbying industry has also diversified, with lobbying increasingly done by think tanks, in-house teams, and law and accountancy firms as well as more traditional public affairs agencies.

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Unlock Democracy’s submission to the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee inquiry House of Lords reform: what next?

Unlock Democracy’s submission to the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee inquiry House of Lords reform: what next?

Unlock Democracy campaigns for a fully elected second chamber.  We believe that members of the UK Parliament should be accountable to the people of the UK and that the most pressing reform of the House of Lords is the need to introduce democratic legitimacy.  It is now over 100 years since the Parliament Act 1911 was passed as a temporary measure until an elected second chamber could be introduced. However we recognise that the government has chosen not to seek to progress the House of Lords Reform Bill so democratic reform of the second chamber is not possible within this parliament.

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Submission to PCRC on a Lobbying Register

Submission to PCRC on a Lobbying Register

Unlock Democracy welcomed the government’s commitment to introduce a statutory register of lobbying interests. However, we are disappointed that proposals that took so long to produce are so limited in scope. The Public Administration Select Committee published its report recommending a register in 2008 and it was part of the Coalition Agreement and yet two years into the new Parliament we are only just at the green paper stage. We are particularly concerned that the lack of senior ministerial leadership on this issue had allowed the policy area to drift.

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Unlock Democracy’s Evidence to the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee on the Government’s Lobbying Bill

Unlock Democracy’s Evidence to the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee on the Government’s Lobbying Bill

Unlock Democracy welcomed the government’s commitment to introduce a statutory register of lobbying interests. However, we are disappointed that proposals that took so long to produce are so limited in scope. When the government consulted on its draft proposals in January 2012 the response from transparency campaigners and lobbying industry alike, was to call for a comprehensive register.  We are disappointed that having taken over a year to think about the consultation responses, including 1,337 from  individual Unlock Democracy supporters, these proposals are even narrower than initially suggested.  

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