Latest Public Sector News

28.02.12

Final reading for ‘social value’ bill

The Public Services (Social Value) Bill is to receive its final reading today. If passed, it would require public bodies to consider social value when commissioning services.

This would include the economic, social and environmental wellbeing of an area.

The private member’s bill could allow charities and social enterprises to compete more fairly with large private sector providers. The Government’s annual spend for commissioning and procurement is £236bn, but only 11% is currently delivered by social enterprises or charities.

All English and some Welsh public bodies, including councils, Government departments, NHS bodies and housing associations would have to comply with the new law if it is passed in the House of Lords.

Social Enterprise UK’s chief executive, Peter Holbrook, said: “More public sector contracts delivered by social enterprises means good news for society and good news for the taxpayer. Social enterprises exist to remedy social and environmental problems, and plough their profits back into a community so the taxpayer’s pound goes further.”

Holbrook added that the bill would improve mainstream business behaviour, as “private firms would strive to deliver greater social value in order to effectively compete for future public service contracts”.

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

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