Draft Policies

These are some suggested policies that could be used by any political party that takes power in the upcoming UK General Election.

Please feel free to leave your comments and improvements.  If you have any other ideas, don't hold back - let us know!


Benefits & Social Cohesion

Community Relations

  • In all public places, no face-coverings by any person and removal of coverings mandatory in all public buildings
  • No single faith schools - all must have at least 3 established, major religious strands all of equal standing in presentation

Jobs & Welfare

Pensions & Older People

  • All Care homes to include crèche and early years childcare & vice versa
  • Pets to be allowed to stay with residents in Care Homes
  • Public Pensions will be linked to increases in wages or prices, depending on which is higher

Charities & Voluntary Organisations

  • All charity and voluntary organisations aligned to VRD
  • Where a charity or voluntary organisation has a significant general public benefit, increase in funding from public purse and possible integration into existing VRD as a HRG
  • Gift Aid to be reviewed; automatic "top-up" of donations by Government; removal of VAT exemptions
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Business, Education & Corporate Responsibility

Business

  • Minimum standard of financial reporting for all companies, partnerships etc
  • Review of global competitiveness of trading within UK, including looking at the Main Rate of Corporation Tax and Small companies Corporation Tax
  • Employers National Insurance will become Employment Tax at a standard rate of 12% on all earnings above LTT, ring fenced for use by Business, Education & Corporate Governance, Benefits & Social Cohesion and Health & Social Care VRDs
  • SME Tax Breaks for investment in Carbon Reducing, Energy Efficient or Waste Management schemes
  • Simplification of Employment Law to ease hiring and retaining staff

Schools

  • English (including British Sign Language) to be First Language in England, Scotland and NI, with Welsh as joint First Language in Wales
  • Schools to “adopt” a Care home
  • Schools to provide after-school activities
  • Playing fields to be available for use out of school hours, with supervision
  • State funding removed from faith schools
  • No single faith schools - must have at least 3 established, major religious strands all of equal standing in presentation
  • All schools to be under scrutiny of local and central education authorities
  • School Performance tables to reflect "added value" rather than "absolute" Educational Points Scale - the better schools are the ones adding more educational points to pupils
  • Domestic Science, including Cookery, in all secondary schools
  • Review of National Curriculum with emphasis on business requirements, national improvement and social skills
  • English language and literacy taught in all schools, and all other subject teaching in English, apart from learning other languages
  • Reintroduction of “streamed” education, based on general ability to promote and nurture learning
  • English language and mathematic courses available to all in evening classes in most secondary schools

Universities

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Culture Media & Sports

  • Sport and activities promoted inside and outside school hours
  • Live theatre and music promoted and encouraged
  • Television Licence fee to be abolished, and BBC becomes full Public Body
  • “Exceptional Persons” to have public scrutiny of contracts and relevant clauses to be included in statutory contracts, where “celebrities” have image rights, short careers etc, these also to be reflected in social contracts
  • National Lottery funds to be “ring fenced” for cultural and charitable purposes, Gov will not be able to use them
  • BBC to have Sports channel, to supplement existing "red button" services and reduce interruption to other channel programming
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Defence

  • Border Control Agency to be part of Defence
  • Borders closed for 2 years for new immigrants pending review and assessment of current situation
  • Improved clarity of armed forces duties and roles
  • Review of armed services personnel circumstances including pay & tax, family housing
  • Comprehensive review of Armed Services, including perhaps the merging or Royal Air Force with Royal Navy
  • Better alignment to NATO and EU policies
  • Push for update and restructure of United Nations role
  • Alignment of current resources to current commitments, reducing theatres involved with if necessary
  • Referendum on Trident Replacement
  • All Service Personnel are always under the jurisdiction of both local and UK Courts for Civil & Criminal acts wherever they are operating.
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Foreign Affairs

Europe

  • Stronger involvement with EU
  • Creation of European Scrutiny HRG to review and present impact analysis to electorate

Foreign Affairs

  • Better relationships with all other countries and less interference with other states internal affairs
  • Better alignment to NATO policies
  • Balancing of agreements with USA and other major nations

International Development

  • We will honour the commitment to spending 0.7% of national income on International Aid by 2013
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Health & Social Care

Family

  • Complete root & branch review of Family Law with Justice & Democracy VRD - add your suggestions for improvement here http://ow.ly/190Jh
    • On instigation of any/all proceedings in Family Court, a pre-requisite will be DNA, Alcohol & Drug Testing of all parties prior to first appearance in Court
    • Birth Certificates to have both parents NINO and ID details
    • Where DNA testing is undertaken for paternity, the laboratories to provide results, both positive and negative, to the local authority where the child was registered for attachment to the Birth Certificate
  • Complete root & branch review of CMEC/CSA, certain payments taken from payslips before tax, shared costs
  • Child Benefit to only be paid to first 2 children
  • Single parents to be homed in Parenting Homes prior to entering the Social Housing system
  • Review and improvement to Social Services and Social Workers
  • Play parks to be secure with supervisors available

Health

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Home & Internal Affairs

Crime

  • Current Police Authorities to be split into the Public Police Service and Central Investigation Service separating investigation and police services
  • The Public Police Service will be responsible for upholding both Civil and Criminal law
  • Police, Ambulance, Fire & Rescue, Mountain Rescue, Coastguard and RNLI to be Emergency Services and funded & organised consistently with cross training as necessary
  • All pseudo Police Officers – including PCSO’s, traffic wardens etc – removed from direct local authority control and all responsibility passed back to the Public Police Service
  • The Public Police Service will include British Transport Police and Military Police
  • Administration integrated and standardised across all Public Police Services
  • Except for a small, clearly and exactly defined situation, Penalty Charge Notices will be withdrawn for most “offences”
  • Criminals lose general Civil Liberties and exclusive from certain sections of the Human Rights Act, always subject to UN Charter
  • Comprehensive drug review, including cigarettes, alcohol and current “street drugs” based on scientific evidence: Legal definition and relative classification of drugs: possible decriminalisation and tax duties on production and purchase
  • Where one party in any court is afforded anonymity, all parties involved receive anonymity e.g. in rape cases
  • Translators funded by person requiring service
  • Creation of Citizens Courts, perhaps within local authority control, to monitor and oversee current Penalty Notice and anti-social matters – with ability to move up to higher court as appropriate
  • Review of existing legislation and introduction of Minimum Sentencing
  • Review of all prison activities, including punishment and rehabilitation elements
  • All legislation to reference new "Age, Civil & Criminal Responsibility Act" where age verification is required
  • Criminal Responsibility, which is always attached to perpetrator by default, may be adjudged by Crown Court, with reference to assigning or removing Criminal Responsibility as appropriate (e.g. Special Needs or clear intent for children)
  • For every criminal act a person does, unless excluded, at least one person or agency will be Criminally Responsible for that action
  • Court Orders & Judgements to identify all relevant law used in the case and outcome, BAILI to be updated to reflect this change for previous 25 years
  • Searchable Judgement Database for members of the public, including all orders and judgements by Act etc
  • DNA only be used for the crime/reason the sample was collected on arrest.  All DNA profiles to be destroyed promptly unless Convicted - where they are entered onto National DNA Database.  Non nationals will always have DNA stored, and these samples taken or verified on entry and exit from UK
  • All convicted prisoners to have DNA samples taken and retained on the National DNA Database
  • Sentences to crimes to have two elements, a minimum "Punishment" tariff, and a "Rehabilitation" tariff, of at least the Punishment tariff.
  • Where convicted of multiple sentences, no concurrency to be available.  All "parole tariffs" to be served consecutive prior to any application for parole, for at least "Punishment" tariff.
  • Where a warrant is issued for "police raids", they must include provision for independant "Defence Representatives" to be present that will explain to the accused and if necessary, curtail warrant execution.  The Defence Representative will be able to present evidence against the Police at trial
  • Arrests for "Assaults on Police Officers" only valid when the officer is in uniform or when already identified as a police officer by showing warrant card - otherwise common assault
  • Unpaid fines collected via tax code change or benefit deduction, so fine is paid over 10 months.  Fines being deducted to be classed as "income" for benefit claimants

Immigration

  • Border Control Agency to be part of Defence
  • Borders closed for 2 years to new immigrants pending review and assessment of current situation
  • no application for asylum considered where applicant has travelled through any other country that has signed UN Charter, they will be repatriated to country they passed through to get to UK
  • all other valid asylum applicants will be treated fairly, and if accepted, must integrate within our society and “pay their way”
  • Once borders open again, a rolling 12 month limit on numbers and points based system for immigrants that benefit the economy
  • ALL non-nationals to have DNA & Biometric information retained indefinately, and verified on entry and exit from UK
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Justice & Democracy

  • Prime Ministers Question Time on Tue & Thu at 7pm
  • MP’s wages to be set at 3 times Average Wage, based on rolling 3 year average
  • MP’s offices & expenses administered and funded centrally by Human Resources & Parliamentary Estates HRG
  • Travel expenses for MP’s will be Travel Vouchers for Public Transport use
  • MP’s included into the general Income Tax schemes and all current expense and allowance schemes to be comprehensively reviewed, with scrutiny by business and electorate for fairness
  • More committee scrutiny to be evening based, for television
  • Electronic Third Chamber for public scrutiny
  • “None of the above” or transferrable voting system
  • Mandatory Voting with £100 fine for non-compliance, ring-fenced for public awareness and promotion
  • Ability to present an “Electorate Members Bill” to parliament, subject to agreed procedures
  • All MP’s to be free of the whip during Committee Stage of all bills, with reasons and justification if going against their local electorates’ decision
  • Fixed parliament term, with mid-term Upper House elections
  • Introduce revised Bill of Rights Act restricting the current Human Rights Act
  • Statutory Instruments to be curtailed and scrutinised by Parliamentary Committee
  • All new bills/acts to be reduced to a single subject where possible to reduce complexity
  • All current and future legislation to have an "Explanation and Spirit" clause to explain, in plain English, why the law is being introduced and the intended use for it.  This clause to be the principle of the legislation
  • Where any partnership has a member that is an entity subject to the Freedom of Information Act, then that and any subsequent entities are subject too.  "Partnership" includes where the entity has an element of control or shares in the partnership.
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Local & Devolved Government

  • Business Rates kept at local level
  • Waste collections at least once per week
  • All boundaries reviewed with Justice & Democracy VRD
  • Elected Mayors with Executive Authority
  • All services (police, education, health etc) will be under direct control of the local government
  • All local governments to provide public scrutiny of all departments
  • Air Ambulances provided by local health authority
  • Planned maintenance all public assets to enable skilled work and civic pride
  • Social Housing allocations to be fair and transparent
  • Social Housing waiting lists to be limited to maximum of 10 years, with building works to ensure compliance
  • Social Housing stocks managed and audited regularly
  • Quangos and NDPB’s to be reviewed and reduced as necessary
  • Council Tax for households to reflect Household Tax Allowance and local requirements
  • Council Tax and other household expenses, including fuel & heating, to be included within RPI, CPI and other Inflation Measures to accurately reflect actual living costs, rather than "housing excluded" costs
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Transport, Environment & Infrastructure

Climate Change & Energy

Countryside

Environment

  • A complete review of water supplies and sewerage management
  • Users of cooking fat and oils etc. to have "fat catchers" to all waste outflows
  • Water Companies to repair or replace ALL fresh water supply pipe work within 10 years
  • New houses to have composting facilities, grey water reclamation systems, black water waste disposal before outflow to public sewer
  • Gas, Water and Electricity smart meters for all houses within 5 years
  • Home Insulation standards for all houses improved within 10 years
  • Land by railway lines classed as Meadow and an increase in wild flowers planted
  • Hedgerows in farms encouraged and increased

Housing

  • Stamp Duty increased to 4% and applied only to the marginal price of a house, with a £125,000 allowance, excluding first time buyers
  • Single parents to be homed in Parenting Homes prior to entering the Social Housing system
  • Social Housing allocations to be fair and transparent
  • Social Housing waiting lists to be limited to maximum of 10 years, with building works to ensure compliance
  • Social Housing stocks managed and audited regularly
  • New houses to have composting facilities, grey water reclamation systems, black water waste disposal before outflow to public sewer
  • Gas, Water and Electricity smart meters for all houses within 5 years
  • Home Insulation standards for all houses improved within 10 years

Transport

  • Consolidated transport policy including Rail, Road, Water and Air travel
  • Increase use of canals and inland waterways for cargo transport
  • Review of rail network and pricing models
  • Review of travel costs, including fuel and other duties - travel to work to be tax deductible
  • Inclusion of 3rd Party Insurance as part of cost of fuel, with cost claw-back on drivers causing accidents
  • “MOT” garages access to DVLA information to confirm insurance, ownership and other details – including reporting of mileage etc
  • Road Maintenance to be priority, and reduction & co-ordination of road works
  • Restructure of some motorways to reduce junctions, and promote intercity travelling
  • Review of Highway Code and driving licences to be time limited to 5 years
  • Traffic Flows to be immediately improved by
    • allowing left turns at red traffic lights
    • off-peak amber flashing traffic lights where practical - more information at http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/flashingamber/
    • stopping or parking only allowed on the Left side of roads (no crossing of oncoming traffic lanes)
    • railings increased around pedestrian crossing points and school “zig zags”
    • mandatory 20mph and physical speed restrictions around school & nursery premises
    • repair/renewal of major route road signs
    • new & upgraded roads to have right turn lanes built in standard way i.e. left lane = left turn or straight on, right lane = right turn only, centre lane(s) straight on only
    • all solid white lines, and cycle lane markings to be "rumble strip" to discourage encroachment by other vehicles
    • lane discipline enforced on motorways
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Treasury & Systems

  • Annual Budget brought forward to 3 months prior to Fiscal yearend
  • Government Fiscal Year to be aligned to Calendar year (i.e. move from 5 Apr to 1 Jan)
  • Banks to provide summarised Source & Application of Funds to account holders, and HMRC as required
  • Allow couples to file joint tax returns, to pool their tax allowances
  • Financial data on income and expenditure to be publicly available, with comparative (PRESENT VALUE) historical data for last 25 years (including internationally agreed measures and categories)
  • A concise, accurate and publicly available "dashboard" of Government Key Performance Indicators to be published on line - including
    • Tax Take per capita; VRD; UN Category
    • Tax Spend per capita; VRD; UN Category
    • %-age spend per capita; VRD; UN Category
    • All major Management Ratios for UK plc - Balance Sheet, P&L, Quick Ratio, ROI, Liquidity, Ordinary Funds etc
  • All net in & out flows of money from central and local government, including funding for HRG's (previous quangos) available online in a "slice-and-dice" presentation
  • Employees National Insurance will become Social Tax at a standard rate of 8% on all earnings, ring fenced for use by Benefits & Social Cohesion, Health & Social Care VRDs
  • Employers National Insurance will become Employment Tax at a standard rate of 12% on all earnings above Lower Tax Threshold (LTT), ring fenced for use by Business, Education & Corporate Governance, Benefits & Social Cohesion and Health & Social Care VRD’s
  • Inheritance Tax and all other Death Duties abolished
  • Stamp Duty increased to 4% and applied only to the marginal price of a house, with a £125,000 allowance, excluding first time buyers
  • Treasury to provide software to allow taxpayers to record their affairs, including partnerships, companies, charities etc
  • Value Added Tax increased to 20%, with review of certain items – including healthcare products
  • Standardised measures to be applied to all invoices, payments etc to allow analysis down to transaction level, with correct checks & balances for accurate cost centre, department, area or other measure analysis – including activity and project based costing
  • “Coins” database made public
  • Create, promote & support Local Data Management HRG
  • Creation of fully qualified Data Dictionary of data, sources and uses within both central and local government
  • Introduction of Individual and Household (community) tax brackets, with initial Income Tax and Household Tax Allowance based on 50% of Average Wages
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