Breaking news today from the Save Our Forests campaign – a rally is being organised at Westminster to oppose the Public Bodies Bill.
This enabling piece of legislation will confer all powers for a sale of England’s Public Forest Estate to the Secretary of State. This paves the way for a sale of 100% of the Public Forest Estate rather than the currently legal restriction of 15%.
From the Save Our Forests website:
Come to the rally and lobby your MP to ask the government to stop, listen and look again – we urge all who work in these organisations or who benefit from the work they do to come and raise their concerns.
12.30 – 2.00 pm: rally at Old Palace Yard, opposite parliament, where speakers will explain the issues and what will be lost if these public bodies are abolished or drastically changed
2.00 – 4.00 pm: Lobby in committee room 5 in the House of Commons. Make an appointment to meet your MP to say what you think about the proposals.
The government is proposing to abolish, merge, privatise and drastically cut and reform a large number of non-departmental public bodies that play important roles in the regional and rural economy, the environment, education, equality and the community. The Public Bodies Bill currently going through Parliament will give ministers wide-ranging powers to make these changes without full consultation and proper Parliamentary scrutiny.
The trade unions that represent members working in a wide range of non-departmental public bodies affected by these proposals are campaigning to get the government to stop, listen and look again.
Following a mass rally which will hear speakers on the issues raised by these drastic plans, our members who work in the public bodies affected and users of the services they provide are going to lobby their MPs.
We will be asking MPs to call on the government to reconsider their ill thought out and hasty plans for the reform of public bodies (recently criticised by the influential public administration select committee).
We want MPs and peers to call on the government to rethink the Public Bodies Bill which it is pushing through Parliament at the moment to give wide-ranging powers to ministers to make these changes with minimal consultation or Parliamentary scrutiny.