Sedwill Lays out His COG Plans In Committee, Today In The Cabinet Office. #Brexit #Prorogation #ContinuityofGovernement #Wiki_Ballot #PDC #GrubStreetJournal

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Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee

Monday 9 September 2019 Meeting started at 12.22pm, ended 2.26pm

  • 12:22:25

    Subject: The work of the Cabinet Secretary

  • 12:22:26

    Witnesses: Sir Mark Sedwill, Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service, and John Manzoni, Permanent Secretary for the Cabinet Office and Chief Executive of the Civil Service

    Not much mention of the referendum vote and Democracy is mentioned once in two hours, I will probably do a little analysis tomorrow but rest easy knowing Sir Mark has it all under control, it’s in his DNA.

    ministers have said they’ll

    25:57

    complied with the law one of course

    25:58

    civil servants always comply with the

    26:00

    law indeed it sets the framework by

    26:01

    which we operate so you’re not going to

    26:03

    instruct people to break the civil

    26:05

    service code of course not and no wonder

    26:07

    well it would be completely

    26:08

    inappropriate to do so nor do I need to

    26:11

    instruct people to observe the civil

    26:13

    service codes in our DNA

    26:17

created at TagCrowd.com

 

TRANSCRIPT, Auto Generated ( not corrected)
right order order
00:06
and can I welcome the cabinet secretary
00:09
and opponent secretary from the Cabinet
00:12
Office to this session on the work of
00:15
the cabinet secretary and the current
00:17
office can I just ask you to confirm
00:19
your identities for the record please
00:21
yes I’m mark several I’m the cabinet
00:23
secretary John Manzoni everything exists
00:26
the civil service and the Cabinet Office
00:28
permanent of secretary right we’ll ask
00:31
our questions as crispy as possible and
00:34
if we can keep the answers short as well
00:37
we’ll get through it thank you for being
00:40
with us so first of all I’ve got some
00:44
questions around the operation of
00:47
fixed-term Parliament’s Act which we
00:49
reported on at the beginning of this
00:51
year and I’ve seen nothing to suggest
00:56
that a dot or kama of that report was
01:01
not correct and we took very careful
01:03
advice from a very large number of
01:05
sources about the consequences of that
01:08
ass
01:10
so cabinet secretary what do you see as
01:13
the role more responsibly with the
01:14
cabinet secretary if the house clearly
01:16
expresses no confidence in the
01:18
government of course continuity of
01:20
government is an important
01:21
constitutional principle so even if even
01:24
if the house has expressed no confidence
01:25
in the government the government
01:26
continues until an alternative
01:28
government is formed either within the
01:30
14 days or through a general election
01:34
the role of a cabinet secretary is as
01:37
the principal adviser on constitutional
01:39
matters of this kind to the Prime
01:41
Minister and the cabinet and obviously
01:44
that advice would be given to them in
01:46
in the national interest if the the
01:52
fictional partners that removed the
01:53
Prime Minister’s ability to advise the
01:56
sovereign to dissolve apartment how has
02:00
that affected the role of the cabinet
02:02
sector in the civil service in general
02:04
following a vote of no-confidence I
02:06
think on a vote of no-confidence they
02:09
don’t think it’s affected us directly
02:11
because in a sense what it’s done is put
02:14
some procedure into the as you set out
02:17
it essentially put some procedural
02:18
timelines into what might have happened
02:20
anyway after a vote of no-confidence it
02:22
was always possible that an alternative
02:25
government might be formats what
02:27
happened when Baldwin lost one in
02:28
twenty-three or it might be possible to
02:30
go for a general election which is what
02:32
happened in 1979 and of course they were
02:34
at different phases of the pond what the
02:36
FDA does is it says you put some
02:38
statutory procedure in there for 14 days
02:40
etc but fundamentally the the decision
02:44
in those circumstances as to whether to
02:46
whether to resign and recommend the
02:49
sovereign send for an alternative or
02:52
whether to see whether the government
02:56
can reconstruct a majority within the 14
02:58
days or to allow the 14 day period to
03:03
timeout and an election take place
03:05
remains the initiative remains with the
03:07
Prime Minister the role of the cabinet
03:08
secretary is to advise the Prime
03:09
Minister in their circumstances during
03:13
our inquiry it was made very clear to us
03:15
that the people behind the drafting of
03:19
the Act and indeed the minister who put
03:23
the act through Parliament at that time
03:25
we’re very clear that other forms of
03:28
confidence motion that do not fit the
03:31
statutory definition
03:33
we’re nevertheless intended to continue
03:36
to have the same effect so if there’s a
03:41
non-statutory that motion of
03:43
no-confidence which does not engage the
03:45
terms of the act what do you understand
03:48
what happened after that and I think
03:50
that is unclear it hasn’t happened in
03:54
yet in formal terms will Vera vote on
03:57
the Queen’s Speech etc would presumably
03:59
pass that test if one were applying the
04:01
traditional conventions and I think this
04:04
is one of the areas one would expect to
04:05
be considered when the act is reviewed
04:07
as it’s due to be is it’s due to be next
04:10
year so essentially I think we touched
04:12
on this last time I was here mr. Chema
04:15
that essentially a vote of no-confidence
04:19
that isn’t a statutory vote of
04:21
no-confidence essentially has political
04:22
effect and it’s then for the political
04:25
system to determine what follows from
04:29
that the statutory vote in the court has
04:32
actually still has political effect but
04:33
of course there are timelines that
04:35
timelines that that kick in so under
04:41
what circumstances would you actually
04:42
advise the Prime Minister he has to
04:44
resign following a no-confidence motion
04:45
wonderful it’s a hypothetical mr.
04:48
chairman you wouldn’t expect me to be
04:51
drawn into it and and you clearly things
04:55
would depend on the the the
04:56
circumstances at the time if a vote
05:00
depending on what period the Parliament
05:02
it is the scale of that is the Prime
05:04
Minister it does the Prime Minister
05:05
believe they can reconstruct a majority
05:07
and win a subsequent vote of confidence
05:08
etc etc so it would have to depend on
05:11
the circumstances at the time and
05:12
obviously I’d be very mindful of that in
05:14
in providing my advice to the Prime
05:17
Minister fundamentally near the Prime
05:18
Minister would have to reach the
05:20
decision in
05:22
the in the advice the recommendation he
05:24
makes to the soften in the case of the
05:32
Prime Minister feeling he has to resign
05:36
then we expect as you have indicated in
05:41
order to provide continuity that it is
05:42
clear he cannot give clear advice Lisa
05:45
Rinna’s as to whom the sovereign should
05:47
send forth yes to be Prime Minister
05:51
first of all what would happen if that
05:53
wasn’t clear or could not be made well
05:57
again it the responsibility lies with
05:58
the Prime Minister to make that
06:01
recommendation to the sovereign
06:03
there’s been no occasion when the Prime
06:06
Minister has not been able to do so and
06:08
certainly in the modern era continuity
06:10
of government has been an important
06:12
principle so I think the cabinet manual
06:14
sets this out essentially the Prime
06:16
Minister’s duty is to resign only when
06:19
they can make such a recommendation that
06:21
recommendation doesn’t have to be a
06:25
cast-iron guarantee that the alternative
06:27
the person that he or she is
06:29
recommending could command the
06:30
confidence but it’s the person they
06:32
consider a likeliest to be able to do so
06:34
and then that individual would have the
06:37
opportunity to test that if the
06:38
sovereign invited them to form a
06:41
government they don’t necessarily have
06:44
to have kissed hands before they do so
06:47
so Alec douglas-home in 6 1963 very
06:50
different circumstances to the modern
06:52
era but there’s an interesting parallel
06:55
wanted to test first whether he believed
06:58
he could command the confidence in those
07:00
days of the cabinet because the
07:01
government had a substantial majority
07:03
before accepting the sovereigns
07:05
commission in essence in 2010 Gordon
07:09
Brown could have simply resigned
07:10
straight after the election could have
07:12
said that he believed that David Cameron
07:14
was likely as to command confidence and
07:17
that would have been an entirely
07:17
constitutional course of action to
07:20
follow but decided with agreement to
07:23
allow
07:24
time for the the conservative let down
07:27
negotiations to go ahead to see whether
07:29
they could form a government which
07:30
actually commanded a majority therefore
07:32
the Queen sent for mr. Cameron so again
07:35
it’s a matter of judgment for the Prime
07:37
Minister it’s a judgment they exercised
07:40
in the national interest in their
07:41
recommendation to the sovereign but
07:42
their responsibility is to be able to
07:44
make a recommendation to the sovereign
07:45
or whom she should invite to form a
07:48
government would you look for some kind
07:54
of confirmation that prior to the
07:58
present Prime Minister resigning that
08:01
the future Prime Minister could in fact
08:02
along the competence that has I think
08:04
again that would be a political judgment
08:06
obviously it’s more complex in
08:08
situations where there’s a minority
08:09
government than in those were there’s a
08:12
majority but fundamentally it’s a
08:14
political judgment that the Prime
08:16
Minister must exercise with advice from
08:18
me but no doubt others according to the
08:21
circumstances in which the incumbent
08:23
Prime Minister has has felt it necessary
08:25
to resign but given that the house may
08:27
well be probed during such a period
08:30
hypothetically the it’s not necessary to
08:35
test that no and indeed if you think of
08:39
the appointment of the current prime
08:42
minister although it was done at the end
08:45
of the parliamentary session and
08:47
although it was he became prime minister
08:50
of a minority government when when
08:52
appointed by the Queen there was the
08:54
opportunity but it wasn’t it wasn’t
08:57
proceeded with to test confidence before
09:00
the summer recess but it isn’t necessary
09:03
to have tested conference confidence
09:05
before the sovereign appoints a prime
09:10
minister and indeed a prime ministers
09:12
are of course after elections appointed
09:14
before they’ve been department so the
09:17
sovereign is in constitutional terms
09:19
inferring comfort
09:21
from the election result but confidence
09:24
formally has yet to be tested when they
09:26
go before the house on the back of them
09:32
if there’s a vote of no-confidence
09:34
against the plate minister he’s got 14
09:37
days but he’s duty-bound to do anything
09:40
during that foot not by the law to do
09:42
anything during that 40 days so he
09:44
faithfully could just run the clock burn
09:45
for 14 days is that the case I think
09:49
that it’s brought that’s that is correct
09:50
so the 14 days is essentially
09:51
essentially what happened in pre FTP a
09:56
terms is that the election has been
09:59
triggered there’s just a 14 day pause on
10:02
that trigger delay on that trigger to
10:05
see whether an alternative government
10:06
can be formed or whether the incumbent
10:09
Prime Minister can regain the confidence
10:11
and of course that would depend very
10:12
much on the political circumstances but
10:14
the act is clear there doesn’t have to
10:17
be a second vote it the the election
10:19
will happen unless there’s a second vote
10:21
which has demonstrated positive
10:23
confidence in Her Majesty’s Government
10:25
whoever is forming that government at
10:27
the time so the 14th is run foot in
10:29
calendar day is currently looking Condor
10:31
days but if there’s a belief that could
10:34
be an alternative government formed
10:36
again Primus is not bound by law to go
10:40
to the Regency Blizz before he could
10:45
just hang tough for 14 days
10:47
so you that’s right mr. count it’s
10:50
constitutional convention very much
10:52
established practice but it’s
10:53
Constitutional Convention not it isn’t
10:56
set out in the FTP indeed the FTP is
10:58
silent on Oliver and defecated the 14
11:00
days is 25 what King days before a
11:03
generation I mean obviously depending on
11:06
the depending on the time it’s 14
11:07
calendar day so yes and the officer you
11:08
have I mean broadly speaking oh sorry I
11:12
missed sorry misunderstood yeah so 14
11:13
calendar days and then a minimum of 25
11:17
working days but it is for the prime
11:19
ministers to set the date of the
11:21
election or at least formally to request
11:23
of
11:25
the sovereign the time of dissolution
11:28
because the dissolution has to happen 25
11:30
what are 25 working days before polling
11:33
date so that’s a minimum period but it
11:36
isn’t a maximum period but obviously I’m
11:40
planning a generation DTM 25 minimum 20
11:44
what it is but that plane – are the
11:45
states of the deep
11:46
so the formally but but if I have if I
11:50
just have this wrong I’ll just clarify
11:52
it in writing but formally what happens
11:53
is the legislation says the polling day
11:56
in the general election day will be 25
11:58
working days from dissolution the date
12:01
of dissolution follows the 14 day period
12:03
if it’s a matter of confidence but the
12:08
request to dissolve this still initiated
12:11
by the Prime Minister and the full
12:13
request is of course is made at the
12:15
sovereign because the sovereign
12:16
dissolves apartments so it doesn’t it’s
12:18
a minimum of 25 days it isn’t a maximum
12:21
of 25 days and there might be wash up or
12:23
whatever it might be before that before
12:25
that would happen what would normally
12:26
expect that to be the case
12:46
challenging Brender of Bristol I mean
12:58
what’s gone on does look well it’s
13:00
completely unprecedented and it looks to
13:04
me underhand and undemocratic as well I
13:07
know you don’t do my pathetical so I
13:09
just what date was it in August that you
13:13
were first informed of that plan
13:17
I don’t recall exactly but I was as
13:19
you’ve seen from the documents that we
13:21
disclosed to the in the various court
13:25
cases there was a submission from one of
13:26
the Prime
13:27
as advisors proposing that course of
13:30
action and I was copied on that
13:32
sufficient on that submission I was
13:33
actually on leave at the time that I was
13:34
reading my reading my papers every day
13:37
so I couldn’t give you the exact day
13:39
because off the top of my head but I
13:41
think you should presume that I saw that
13:42
submission either that day or the day
13:43
after it was around then yes I would
13:49
have normally I mean I would have seen
13:51
that submission either the day it was
13:53
submitted into the Prime Minister’s box
13:55
or possibly the day of the the the
14:05
Queen’s private secretary would not be
14:07
privy to the internal consultations
14:09
within number 10 so that would that
14:11
would only any communication with the
14:14
palace would only happen once the Prime
14:16
Minister had reached a decision and then
14:17
he would want to make a request to the
14:19
palace so so the palace is not involved
14:22
in any of the discussions I don’t think
14:27
I don’t think the Paris would quite
14:28
recognize it in those terms but the the
14:31
discussion is essentially a discussion
14:33
within government and then once the
14:34
Prime Minister has made a decision the
14:36
request is then made of the sovereign
14:38
and that happens through the usual well
14:42
in due course not mrs. Sarah we and we
14:47
and we have a there’s a there’s a again
14:50
a very firm convention that we don’t
14:52
comment in detail at all on
14:56
communications between the palace and on
15:00
return or indeed particularly between
15:01
the Queen and prime is very much a
15:10
political question I genuinely don’t
15:12
know what other advice the Prime
15:15
Minister took on that he has regular
15:18
conversations with his with his cabinet
15:20
colleagues but decisions of this kind
15:23
including if you think in the past
15:24
before the fixed-term Parliament act
15:26
were made by the prime minister
15:28
themselves and and usually decisions for
15:32
example to call elections before the
15:34
fixed term pilot Act were told cabinet
15:37
was informed of them on the day
15:38
that the prime minister would have
15:40
sought sort dissolution and that’s been
15:43
true certainly in the whole of my adult
15:45
lifetime these are the is a decision of
15:47
the Prime Minister as the sovereigns
15:48
principal advisor not usually for
15:51
cabinet as a whole just the tiny bit
15:53
looks weird in August when you are away
15:55
when I was I was in in the modern era as
16:00
cabinet secretary you’re never really
16:01
away but I wasn’t in the office would
16:06
you say that would leaving the European
16:09
Union without a deal during a
16:11
pre-election Purdom periods okay so now
16:14
we have a Geisha would that constitute a
16:17
breach of convention there is no
16:20
precedent that I could one could draw up
16:22
on draw upon for that and again
16:25
fundamentally I think one has to say
16:27
that’s that’s that is an absolutely core
16:30
political matter it’s for the political
16:32
system to to address I think though
16:35
powder is not really I mean the Pirtle
16:38
rules are not really designed to answer
16:42
the first-order political question to
16:44
that kind they’re designed to ensure the
16:46
proper conduct by government of an
16:48
election and to ensure that an incumbent
16:50
government doesn’t use the inevitable
16:54
prestige and resources of being an
16:57
incumbent government inappropriately
16:59
during an election so first-order
17:01
political questions of that kind and not
17:03
really questions
17:04
the perder is just the purdah rules are
17:06
designed to address yeah I mean because
17:08
again during the original 24 month
17:10
negotiation there was eight weeks off
17:12
for an election already won so I think
17:14
people are suspicious of what might
17:15
happen if the worst case scenario
17:17
happens now what would be the effect
17:20
would you say I’ve heard it on the UK’s
17:23
negotiations
17:25
well the purdah rules allow for
17:27
essential business to continue and and
17:29
that was true during the to earlier
17:32
elections we had in spring this year
17:34
when negotiations were continuing
17:36
obviously we’d have to do we’d have
17:39
handle that with great care be given
17:41
that this will be one of the central
17:42
issues of the of any election campaign
17:46
of course we don’t yet have an election
17:47
and we make I need to make a judgement
17:49
and again advise the prime minister in
17:51
the cabinet that’s at the time but there
17:53
is provision for international
17:54
negotiations and for essential business
17:55
to continue where an election called and
17:58
of course we we don’t yet know whether
18:01
that is to be that is to be the case is
18:03
it there’s another motion receiving but
18:05
I note I note the result of last week’s
18:18
position part is be given to in
18:20
developments with dates and negotiations
18:22
or progress towards the module so so
18:26
during a general election campaign of
18:28
course we have the opposition have
18:29
access talks we can provide them with
18:31
information I think in these
18:32
circumstances we’d have to look very
18:34
carefully at with with the government at
18:38
the at exactly what request the
18:41
opposition was making but there is a
18:43
there is an underlying principle that we
18:45
are that during an election campaign we
18:47
seek to prepare alternative governments
18:48
to be able to assume the reins of office
18:50
and do so effectively and again this is
18:55
a this is a it’s essentially
18:58
unprecedented situation were an election
19:00
to be called and of course I’m slightly
19:01
breaking my rule by indulging in
19:04
hypotheticals because election hasn’t
19:06
been called but for example after the
19:09
financial crisis Alistair Darling kept
19:13
the the Shadow Chancellor informed but
19:17
he still made the decisions and that was
19:19
the key thing there was only one
19:20
government at a time and he still made
19:22
the the decisions of some of the some of
19:25
the measures he was he was taken again
19:28
another convention yes and the polls are
19:32
advised on by the Cabinet surgery and to
19:34
some extent policed by me but again
19:37
formally they are issued in the name of
19:41
of the Prime Minister the government was
19:48
going as I said well you said in August
19:51
13th the parlour rules are set to in
19:54
Chapter two of the cabinet manual let me
19:56
reassure you that I’m ready to ensure
19:58
that full and proper application can you
20:01
actually good WOZA but you actually
20:04
guarantee that yes the Civil of this is
20:08
essential I was very speaking there is
20:09
the cabinet structure but also the head
20:11
of the Civil Service and essentially the
20:13
pearls are very large and as I said
20:15
about the conduct of government and its
20:18
use of resources and its use of the the
20:21
powers of incumbency during knowledge
20:24
and there’s we dealt with this in
20:27
challenging circumstances before and I
20:30
would absolutely do my job in those and
20:33
exercise my responsibilities were that –
20:35
all right
20:40
have a nice day I’m sorry it’s early I’m
20:43
sorry I got distracted yeah I just
20:46
wanted to ask a simple question
20:47
everybody is talking about an election
20:50
all the time but the fact is is that
20:51
under the rules of the fixed term
20:53
Parliament act the vote has gone against
20:55
that that can be actually sustained
20:58
indefinitely can’t it until the natural
21:01
end to the life of this government
21:02
that’s exactly what that is so to the
21:04
intent of the fixed term Parliament act
21:05
it can assuming that continues to
21:09
operate within its terms and of course
21:12
there are alternatives that you will
21:14
have seen some speculation about but the
21:17
fixed term polymer xx a fixed term and
21:19
it can only be they’re going to be an
21:21
early election either in the if there’s
21:23
a vote of no-confidence and the
21:24
circumstances we’ve discussed or if
21:26
there’s a supermajority for an early
21:28
elections likewise we’ve seen them a
21:30
prime minister tried to remove the
21:31
perjure rules particularly I’m thinking
21:34
of the referendum that is the subject of
21:36
such discussions and that that was
21:39
defeated in the house so presumably the
21:42
purdah rules cannot be removed unless
21:44
there is legislation well the per the
21:46
rules are largely a matter of convention
21:48
there are some there was some reference
21:50
I think of course the word itself isn’t
21:52
used in law but there is some reference
21:53
to that in in crak but the pernod rules
21:59
are very long-established convention as
22:00
I say they’re largely about ensuring
22:03
that an incumbent government isn’t able
22:05
to use the resources of government and
22:07
the the Queen the communications
22:09
capabilities etc of government in order
22:11
to disadvantage the opposition during a
22:15
during an election campaign they they
22:17
aren’t designed to resolve these
22:18
first-order questions that you’re
22:20
touching the ball thank you it was
22:24
wrecking in my mind is that these rules
22:27
are non-statutory yes non-statutory yes
22:33
well the course would not have a lien on
22:36
these matters well if I may mr. chairman
22:40
I’m not sure I’d use the word MIT
22:42
because I think conventions are as
22:43
important as legislation in matters of
22:46
the Constitution the Constitution is
22:49
built on foundations of both law and and
22:51
convention that there is not but I bring
22:53
your second point that I mean of course
22:56
it is for the courts to decide where
22:58
they drew those boundaries is where and
23:00
of course we’re in the middle of a case
23:01
that’s going to the Supreme Court right
23:02
now which is largely about convention
23:04
but it is being subject to the judicial
23:08
process and so far the courts have
23:10
concluded its non-justice of all but
23:12
that process is yet to be determined and
23:17
it’s a long way of saying I agree that
23:20
fundamentally conventions are a matter
23:23
for the political systems I think
23:24
reports of this committee before have
23:25
reinforced rather than a matter for
23:28
suitably acknowledged that was placed in
23:31
any of our constitutional conventions
23:33
that every business important is our
23:34
lawyers indeed but the flexibility
23:37
exists that didn’t exist in the
23:42
provisions but of course the other thing
23:49
am I correct that you will want to do is
23:51
to protect civil servants from being
23:54
involved in anything that could be
23:56
regarded as partial indeed thank you and
24:04
I’ve said it before and I risk of just
24:06
prolonging the proceedings a just a
24:08
moment I do want to put a record yet
24:10
again my appreciation on behalf of the
24:12
whole of the civil service actually the
24:13
wider public service for this committees
24:15
strong support every time we’ve
24:17
addressed it for there’s underlying
24:19
values of impartiality and service we do
24:25
appreciate it service code says civil
24:31
servants can’t break the law but if the
24:34
and the been bill is ignored and the
24:36
ante No Deal stuff is ignored civil
24:39
service phone could be in that conflict
24:41
of interest of that conflicts of loyalty
24:43
well they could be within their rights
24:45
to refuse working with the Tory
24:48
government to to enforce an illegal no
24:52
deal breaks it what would you do like
24:55
that is with respect piling a series of
24:58
hypotheses
24:59
together every minister has been asked
25:02
about this has said the government will
25:03
comply with the law including the most
25:06
senior members of the government okay we
25:07
well I don’t I’m not gonna you would
25:10
understand as cabinet secretary neither
25:12
is interested in reading unattributable
25:15
briefings and press speculation as
25:16
anyone else because I’m a political
25:17
junkie it’s part of the job or part of
25:20
the attributes to the job but as capital
25:21
secretary I’m quite clear I don’t make
25:23
my decisions or comment on those things
25:25
in formal areas of parliamentary
25:28
committees every Minister has been asked
25:30
about this has been clear that the
25:31
government will comply with the law and
25:32
the the the key deadline in that is six
25:38
weeks away there’s a there are many
25:40
steps between now and then the
25:42
government is engaged in seeking to
25:43
negotiate in you do pm’s been in Dublin
25:46
this morning as you’ll have seen his
25:47
Sherpa is has been in Brussels last week
25:50
and is in Brussels again this week so I
25:52
think we should just take these things
25:53
step by step but the government has said
25:56
their ministers have said they’ll
25:57
complied with the law one of course
25:58
civil servants always comply with the
26:00
law indeed it sets the framework by
26:01
which we operate so you’re not going to
26:03
instruct people to break the civil
26:05
service code of course not and no wonder
26:07
well it would be completely
26:08
inappropriate to do so nor do I need to
26:11
instruct people to observe the civil
26:13
service codes in our DNA
26:17
it’s got moved about the impartiality
26:19
which we touched on a bit under the
26:21
previous administration there was
26:23
complaints for ministers that officials
26:26
were not given impartial serve advice
26:29
what impacts of these complaints had on
26:32
the protection of the civil servants
26:34
impartiality complained to me that I’m
26:39
that I that I can recall her I’m aware
26:41
of I may again may have been some
26:43
unattributed comments but I’ve never
26:45
heard that indeed we had strong support
26:46
from ministers for it if I can put it
26:49
this way and this is a real summary I
26:51
think and I hope John would agree with
26:52
me of our attitude we we owe ministers
26:56
to things candor and can do your candid
26:59
advice in private
27:00
including unwelcome advice that may be
27:03
contesting some of their political
27:06
instincts based on the evidence once
27:08
they’ve made a decision we owe them our
27:11
creativity our energy and purpose in
27:14
implementing those decisions within the
27:16
law but implementing those decisions
27:18
once once taken so there is that mixture
27:20
in the civil service DNA if I can use
27:23
that of the candor in private and the
27:25
can-do attitude in implementation I
27:27
think that’s that’s how we maintain our
27:32
utility and support to governments and
27:35
how do we demonstrate in partiality we
27:37
demonstrated partiality not by me
27:38
stating it or indeed even by this
27:40
committee endorsing it but by the way by
27:42
the actions the civil service takes in
27:44
delivering the agenda for governments of
27:46
all compliant which is about the civil
27:53
service needs to demonstrate a
27:55
commitment to working on behalf of the
27:57
government of the day and while speaking
28:00
the truth to power where there are
28:02
significant concerns about the
28:03
practicality of implementing policies
28:06
how do officials manage this attention
28:09
without
28:11
ministers confidence it’s a it’s I mean
28:16
in some ways it is the it is the key
28:19
attribute of a really good policy
28:21
official of course one has to speak
28:23
truth to power but it’s only really
28:25
effective if you speak in a way that
28:26
power is actually paying attention when
28:28
you do so it’s no good just indulging
28:29
yourself and so and that that is the
28:33
skill of the experienced policy
28:36
officials they can ease they do them so
28:38
they remain absolutely true to our need
28:41
to provide evidence and and our analysis
28:46
of whatever policy areas ministers are
28:49
contemplating all of the risks they
28:51
might be taking the resources they might
28:53
need but we combine that we have to
28:55
combine that with a clear commitment
28:56
that we would deliver what ministers
28:59
want and that’s essentially about
29:01
developing trust and confidence between
29:04
ministers and their key officials it’s
29:05
many ways the attributes I look for most
29:08
if I’m appointing a permanent secretary
29:10
so what so I recommending the
29:13
appointment of a permanent secretary
29:14
before
29:26
well we have there’s been a great deal
29:28
of work on that and we I mean
29:32
essentially the decisions but both this
29:33
government and the last government took
29:35
on no deal preparations are based on our
29:39
assessment drawing on a lot of evidence
29:41
from outside of what’s necessary to
29:44
ensure that the country as a whole is
29:45
prepared properly for a new deal brexit
29:49
which of course remains a contingency
29:51
until the European Council decides
29:54
otherwise we are leaving on the 31st of
29:56
October that’s the decision in
29:58
international law and there’s been there
30:02
have been leaks which as you know I
30:04
agree and I’m doing what I can to
30:07
prevent but civil service has provided
30:10
ministers with very candid advice on
30:12
both the country’s preparedness and the
30:14
government preparations
30:18
yes without going into individual cases
30:23
what mechanisms exists enable you to
30:26
establish if an official is acting
30:29
obstructive ly or is seeking to act in
30:33
an impartial way in a partial way in a
30:39
partial way and so I would I mean I
30:42
would expect large of that to to arise
30:44
either through an informal or
30:46
potentially even a formal complaint or
30:50
at least a question from the minister or
30:55
indeed from other civil servants civil
30:56
servants are self policing in this area
30:59
and we have lots of conversations
31:01
including with our senior teams about
31:03
how do we ensure that we are
31:05
instrumentalizing our values in the in
31:08
the modern era across the whole range of
31:10
values not just in partiality and I
31:12
would there are lots of internal checks
31:14
and balances but if if a civil servant
31:16
were considered to be acting in breach
31:19
of those values including the the
31:21
requirement to act impartially then if
31:24
inadvertent I’d expect that to be a
31:26
performance matter may be informal to
31:29
start with depending on the seriousness
31:30
of it if it were deliberate then it
31:32
would be a disciplinary matter yes
31:34
before we go into that just to revert to
31:36
the point that you made that there are
31:38
arrangements that it’s understood that
31:40
other officials will report officials
31:42
who they suspect of not acting
31:45
absolutely matter yes absolutely the
31:49
civil service self polices in this area
31:51
because it’s very important to all of us
31:53
essentially people are team power-up
31:54
team players in public service it’s if
31:56
you aren’t it’s not a great place to
31:57
pursue your career and so people are
32:00
very conscious of that and conscious of
32:03
the values particularly when there is a
32:05
big political focus on if they in other
32:07
times they might be conscious of other
32:08
areas about values but right now
32:10
impartiality of course is front and
32:11
center in people’s minds so that would
32:13
be a professional obligation yes I’m not
32:19
an explicit one I mean I think I mean
32:21
there is a professional obligation on
32:23
all of us to ensure that all of us is
32:26
operating in accordance with the curve
32:27
in
32:28
accordance with our values and I would
32:30
expect any civil servant who felt that
32:32
some are another civil servant were
32:33
Britain were operating in breach of
32:34
those values whether impartiality all
32:37
the others any of the others behaving
32:40
with without respect for example to
32:44
colleagues and so on I would expect
32:46
civil stones to raise that through the
32:48
channels through their line management
32:49
channels and you touched on it briefly
32:51
but what would be the practical
32:52
consequences for somebody who was
32:55
discovered not of being acting in an
32:56
impartial manner well mr. Jones I think
32:58
as I said it would depend on the
32:59
circumstances if it would depend on the
33:01
seriousness of it and whether it was
33:03
whether the it was inadvertent or
33:07
deliberate and if inadvertent and not
33:10
particularly serious that it might be a
33:12
matter of some personal coaching
33:14
performance management etc depending on
33:16
where on that scale
33:17
seemed appropriate obviously if it would
33:19
deliberate that with this significant
33:21
disciplinary matter and that could lead
33:23
potentially to dismissal well any
33:25
depending on the seriousness any
33:26
disciplinary matter can lead through all
33:28
of the various misconduct proceedings
33:31
and of course at the very most serious
33:34
and then dismissal is the is the most
33:37
severe sanction how often does I mean
33:41
very rarely I don’t know yeah I mean a
33:46
tiny handful year we could let the
33:47
committee know in writing but it’s a
33:49
very immediate extraction consequences
33:53
in certain cases you obviously without I
33:55
think in the commercial world if I
34:02
didn’t want to work on a particular
34:03
client I could discuss that with my
34:06
colleagues and I could be removed from
34:08
that part does that mechanism exist
34:10
within the civil service I mean first
34:12
civil servant is finding it particularly
34:15
challenging because of their own views
34:18
yes but not really because of people’s
34:22
own views it would usually be because
34:24
they might have some but either real or
34:26
perceived conflict for example their
34:28
partner spouse is working in the area
34:31
concerned or has a has a particular
34:36
has taken a public position on something
34:38
of that kind generally in fact almost
34:42
almost almost always we would expect
34:45
civil servants to serve the government
34:48
of the day accordingly especially
34:52
respective of their personal views with
34:54
equal enthusiasm and loyalty and if not
34:56
then they might not have chosen the
34:58
right career and would it be fair to say
35:01
that this is a particularly challenging
35:03
time for civil servants but the civil
35:05
service ethos is holding fast I think he
35:09
thought is holding fast absolutely and I
35:11
think if you ask for example you we we
35:14
now have a new government with quite a
35:17
large number of new ministers and I
35:19
think all have been impressed by the the
35:23
pace the application the candor the
35:26
can-do attitude of the civil service
35:30
particularly those who are encountering
35:31
it close up for the first time of course
35:34
this is a high-pressure period it is for
35:35
the entire system but I’m very proud of
35:37
how the civil services this morning and
35:39
just a nasty on a personal inquiry do
35:42
you have good counseling services
35:45
available to civil servants because the
35:48
pressure must be absolutely enormous we
35:51
do although it’s an area we run largely
35:55
through arcing the resources function
35:56
area John wanted about anything but we
35:57
are conscious of that of that
36:00
requirement and of course I think I
36:04
think it was the Public Accounts
36:05
Committee I forget if I have that wrong
36:07
but we were very interested in our
36:08
question of the right procedures for
36:11
legitimate whistleblowing which goes
36:12
back to the values and impartiality
36:15
question we’ve developed those kind of
36:18
mechanisms within the civil service in
36:20
order to ensure that there is absolutely
36:21
no excuse for people to decide that if
36:23
they’re unhappy about something then the
36:26
recourse is to disclose it
36:28
illegitimately to someone outside
36:31
someone outside the system but I think
36:33
there was always more we can do this
36:34
error I don’t really want to do well in
36:36
24 Simon I think as you rightly point
36:38
out this is a highly stressed time for
36:40
group of people
36:43
and everybody’s different and they deal
36:45
with those things differently so we have
36:46
absolutely ramped up to like the
36:50
availability of those channels for those
36:53
people who choose to would like to speak
36:55
to somebody outside of airline
36:56
management Joan so let us speak up the
36:58
campaign that’s about to launch and it
37:00
does all of the things for the reasons
37:02
that you’ve implied and they can feel
37:03
confident that that will not affect
37:04
their career path absolutely one of the
37:08
areas we asked about in the staff survey
37:10
and what quite carefully is the whole
37:12
safety challenge culture and and of
37:15
course that goes to the point you’re
37:16
making down shop okay I mean I’ve just
37:21
added on the end of this I mean there
37:24
has been a debate over recent years
37:26
particularly under the during the David
37:32
Cameron administration about whether the
37:35
system needs to be reformed to give
37:37
ministers more say over who fills what
37:41
key roles
37:43
and some individuals in the government
37:46
today have been publicly extremely
37:48
critical of the concept of the permanent
37:51
posture of civil service as it as it is
37:54
today what kind of debate is going on in
37:57
government about this at the moment the
38:00
question I think I think would be fair
38:03
to say bandwidth is relatively limited
38:05
for issues other than the the immediate
38:08
issue of brexit so we haven’t had had a
38:11
particularly active discussion of that
38:13
of that kind but I think it really goes
38:17
back to the earlier point mr. chairman
38:19
that several you and some of your
38:21
colleagues have been have been touching
38:22
upon the civil services best argument
38:25
for retaining the the overall structure
38:31
of the civil service not not avoiding
38:36
reform of organization must always be on
38:38
that agenda but the basic concepts on
38:41
which the civil service exists is to
38:43
demonstrate to every new government and
38:46
the wider political system the benefits
38:48
of our system we are according to this
38:51
to an international survey the world’s
38:53
best civil service it was up against a
38:54
whole
38:54
voa’s the in size index we came out top
38:56
I think that is a pretty good indication
38:59
I don’t know I’m not complacent about it
39:01
because there are various areas we can
39:02
still improve and learn from others we
39:04
came out top and I think we should take
39:07
some pride in that but we we must always
39:09
riyer n– that confidence of governments
39:14
and of the wider political system and of
39:16
the public by our candid advice and our
39:19
can-do attitude to delivery its time
39:23
immemorial it has been possible for
39:25
ministers to influence the choice of
39:28
officials going to into particular roles
39:31
and to some extent the formalization and
39:36
of open recruitment and open open
39:41
application has made that a little bit
39:47
more difficult than it used to be so to
39:49
what extent can you preserve the
39:53
flexibility so that ministers do finish
39:55
up with the officials they want to carry
39:57
out the policies that they need and
39:59
there is a little bit of scope for
40:02
dealing with the inevitable clashes
40:05
between conflicting personalities
40:07
without damaging the long-term prospects
40:10
of someone’s career I think I mean in a
40:12
sense mr. chairman I think the answer is
40:13
exactly the way you put the question we
40:15
have to operate this we have to remember
40:17
we’re dealing with human beings we’re
40:18
dealing with personal relationships it’s
40:19
in no one’s interest if personalities
40:23
don’t work well together particularly a
40:26
high-pressure environment we have to do
40:27
that in accordance with the rules and
40:29
our and our underlying values and
40:30
principles but there is enough
40:32
flexibility in the system it’s a very
40:34
big institution to enable us to operate
40:37
that that way and it depends it it
40:40
depends as you know according to
40:42
experience in convention on the nature
40:44
of the job it’s it’s clearly very
40:46
important that a minister’s private
40:47
office and the minister have a good
40:49
relationship those are quite high
40:51
pressured environments and it’s just
40:52
stressful for everyone if they don’t and
40:55
I can think of occasions when we’ve
40:57
found that a particular product
40:59
secretary for example hasn’t
41:01
that the personalities just haven’t
41:03
worked but the private sector themself
41:04
hasn’t been happy and therefore
41:06
performing to their full potential we’ve
41:08
moved them to another job with
41:10
absolutely no concern for their career
41:13
because these are very particular jobs
41:14
with very particular very particular
41:18
requirements and of course we do have
41:20
the formal present position now for the
41:22
most senior appointments that was a
41:25
reform introduced under the Cameron
41:26
government that permanent secretaries
41:28
are appointed by the Prime Minister from
41:31
a shortlist of the up candidates deemed
41:35
appointed by a professional panel
41:38
chaired by the Civil Service Commission
41:39
so it isn’t just choose a the Prime
41:45
Minister does actually have the choice
41:46
between a point of Canada’s and that was
41:48
a reform introduced during the Cameron
41:49
government and David Norman’s time as
41:52
first civil service commissioner while
42:00
you did question who’s personally sorry
42:03
sorry you mentioned that working
42:05
relationships and loyalty to cabinet
42:07
taken from question appear sleep I’m
42:09
curious were you asked to say in a
42:11
statement for the court proceedings in
42:12
Scala in England regarding prorogation
42:14
oh the witness to the witness statement
42:17
was just produced I mean was signed by
42:19
the Treasury solicitor and I can’t think
42:20
of an occasion which a cabinet Sophie
42:21
has ever been asked to sign a statement
42:24
of that kind I’m not sure it would have
42:26
been appropriate for me to do so exactly
42:37
so so this was a witness statement
42:39
on behalf of the government and had
42:45
attached to it the papers we were
42:46
disclosing to the to the court in order
42:50
to meet the duty of candour the courts
42:52
actually the various courts in order to
42:53
meet the duty of candor that we have and
42:56
unless one is giving a witness stated in
42:58
a personal capacity because you’re
42:59
saying I was at this event and then you
43:02
do it on behalf of the government and
43:03
that that was done by the Treasury
43:05
solicitor there was a whole load of and
43:06
rather in a key
43:07
speculation about that in the press dr.
43:09
hunt an impossibility of our Civil
43:12
Service used to be the envy of the world
43:14
and but I think people feel II do hope
43:16
it’s true it still is but it’s been
43:18
tested by an unelected prime minister
43:21
with no majority who is prepared to
43:24
entertain working around the rule of law
43:26
he said the past leave last one was
43:28
hypothetical so here’s a real example on
43:30
Thursday these rows of police officers
43:33
in a trumpian way that were appearing in
43:36
one look like an election stunt it went
43:38
way beyond the recruitment campaign my
43:42
colleagues Louise hate the shadow
43:44
policing minister and Holly links have
43:46
written to you about this but they’ve
43:47
not had an answer so they did wonder if
43:49
I could race with you and some of those
43:51
questions about did the chief did the
43:53
Chief Constable of the area know that it
43:57
was going to be that were they informed
43:59
and so I don’t know all of the detail
44:01
which is why I haven’t responded yet I
44:03
know there have been some questions
44:05
around around that event I think
44:07
actually my understanding is that that
44:10
the concerns of largely arisen around
44:13
the Q&A; session rather than the initial
44:16
statement but I need to look at a little
44:18
well I need to lay it all I need to look
44:19
at all of the details and all obviously
44:21
I’ll obviously obviously respond but the
44:24
the of course that doesn’t really that
44:27
isn’t really about some services
44:28
impartial they are probably their public
44:31
servants and and I obviously need to
44:34
consult the Chief Constable etc before I
44:36
before I respond to I know and of course
44:45
I’m I wouldn’t be in a position to
44:48
answer many of those I’d have to ask the
44:49
Chief Constable about those questions
44:50
and respond of course
44:55
oh you would if they were they could no
44:56
they can of course thing inspect respond
44:59
add at this point the grateful facts of
45:02
this committee every civil servant who
45:05
has had a very very trying time in
45:08
recent years and recent months and it’s
45:10
probably going to get even more trying
45:11
over the next few weeks and months the
45:15
Parliament is very very grateful for
45:17
their public service and they deserve
45:20
our support and admiration for what they
45:23
do thank you thank you I really
45:25
appreciate that on people doing wee-wee
45:27
when we receive those tables I often in
45:30
fact invariably pass them on in our
45:32
internal communication so people do
45:33
notice it and appreciate it so family
45:35
grateful thank you Kevin Hawkins what is
45:41
the status of the investigation into
45:43
leaked official documents we’ve seen
45:44
dead to soak in Derrick’s resignation
45:46
but unusually mr. Hopkins this is now a
45:49
police matter and and of course most
45:53
leaking queries are internal but this
45:56
was sufficiently serious it crossed the
45:59
legal threshold and so this is now a
46:01
police matter and they’re conducting the
46:03
investigation well well of course those
46:09
that particular leak
46:12
was very serious because I mean that’s
46:14
the basis of which it crossed the
46:16
threshold and legislation to involve the
46:18
price leaks generally of course are and
46:21
we’ve discussed it before debilitating
46:23
they they damage trust there is then
46:27
always a risk that we close down
46:30
information sharing and dialogue within
46:32
government and that means that all of
46:34
those questions you were asking earlier
46:36
about ensuring that ministers have all
46:38
of the evidence they need that there is
46:40
the opportunity for the robust challenge
46:43
within the system it can impede that
46:46
because if people are unsure about
46:48
whether a skewed account of those
46:51
conversations is going to make it into
46:53
the public domain then they will
46:55
inevitably hold back or they will
46:57
restrict the conversation so I I think
47:00
my view is
47:02
or debilitating debilitating to the
47:05
conduct of good government most
47:08
important I touched on it in a way that
47:10
had these leaks would certainly cause
47:13
civil servants in s Frank in their
47:15
private communications particularly
47:17
ministers when if they’re fearful that
47:20
anything they say might be lead yes and
47:23
I think that is just human nature and of
47:27
course I have also mentioned the
47:28
committee before or if confidential
47:31
internal documents are required of
47:34
government to be brought into the public
47:36
domain then of course in future there
47:40
will be an inevitable incentive explicit
47:44
or implicit for those documents to be
47:46
written with that in mind a what action
47:50
have you taken to protect Diplomatic
47:52
Service and other civil servants from
47:54
further leaks of private communications
47:56
including through the hacking of emails
47:58
and so the the most weeks are not
48:03
hacking they’re just someone who’s
48:05
actually decided to if I can’t think of
48:08
an example someone who’s just decided to
48:11
share information in improperly but we
48:17
do provide guidance to people on the
48:19
security communications generally we
48:20
have government encryption around our
48:24
email systems people are people have
48:27
guidance on passwords and and and how
48:31
they handle the security of that of that
48:34
kind so there are some processes of that
48:36
kind that we put in place we try to
48:39
ensure that people are conscious of the
48:40
address list that they’re sending
48:42
information to particularly more
48:44
classified information it isn’t just
48:46
sprayed indiscriminately around too wide
48:50
an audience and we have the
48:51
classification system itself with the
48:54
most sensitive material not just
48:55
national security material but
48:56
international negotiations would be held
48:59
on a separate secret system or indeed
49:01
sometimes if it’s intelligence related
49:02
on
49:04
and even more highly highly protected
49:06
system but the underlying issue is about
49:09
training education culture and people
49:12
working out for themselves what is the
49:16
appropriate balance between sharing
49:17
information in a way that generates the
49:20
most efficient and effective policy
49:22
process so all the people you need to
49:23
know know and can contribute but doing
49:26
so in a way that protects the underlying
49:27
information particularly since if it’s
49:29
sensitive and that that’s the judgment
49:31
that people have to make and we try and
49:33
offer training education coaching etc in
49:36
enabling people to do that it’s been
49:38
reported obviously likely that quite a
49:41
number of people see emails even when
49:44
they are sensitive and you know it’s a
49:48
lower level the possibility of one or
49:51
another person leaking is is increased
49:54
but because of that I think it’s it’s
49:56
it’s a feature to some extent to the
49:59
digital era of course and when I joined
50:01
we didn’t have email things were sent
50:03
around on paper and inevitably therefore
50:06
copy copy lists were much more
50:09
restricted just through practicalities
50:11
whereas an email there’re much more can
50:13
be copied actually if you look at big
50:14
organizations whether military civilian
50:19
private sector public sector whatever it
50:21
is the broad sharing of information is
50:24
generally enables people to do their
50:27
jobs better because they have they have
50:29
they they’re making decisions with all
50:33
of the relevant information available to
50:35
them so there is a general desire and
50:37
big organization to share information
50:38
widely to ensure everyone has it
50:41
available to them and therefore it’s
50:42
easier then to give people more autonomy
50:44
because then you know they’re making
50:45
decisions with with full knowledge but
50:49
of course in government there has to be
50:50
a balance between that and protecting
50:53
information that might be sensitive well
50:55
that’s sensitive on national security or
50:56
international relations grounds or of
50:59
course domestically politically
51:01
sensitive because because they might
51:04
mean there might be information
51:05
contained
51:06
they’re in that is that is politically
51:08
controversial and we’re constantly
51:10
trying to get that balance right we’re
51:12
really on on that theme I you satisfied
51:14
that existing protocols for example
51:16
around access and delegated access to
51:18
what a term official sensitive emails
51:21
are sufficient I think the formal
51:24
protocols I in a sense the thought the
51:27
issues probably less the formal
51:28
protocols and more the underlying
51:29
culture and questions it’s not just
51:31
official sensitive material for example
51:33
the immigration system or the the
51:36
benefit system or the tax system we have
51:38
a great deal of information on
51:40
individuals that needs to be highly
51:42
protected because it’s about our
51:43
personal tax records or status and so on
51:45
and fundamentally if people didn’t have
51:48
the right values and culture that
51:52
information people more people that need
51:54
it could get access to that information
51:55
but they don’t you you don’t we don’t
51:58
see problems of that of that kind and
52:01
that’s partly because there’s an
52:03
underlying professional commitment to
52:06
see to deal with only the information
52:07
that one should have access to and it’s
52:10
ensuring that we have that same culture
52:13
of responsibility to information that we
52:16
need to ensure applies to applies to all
52:19
information it did when I joined because
52:21
we were in a different era the digital
52:24
era has made it more challenging I think
52:26
we we are we are striving to try and
52:28
assure that it’s it’s properly embedded
52:32
in in the era in which we now operate
52:37
connected issue
52:41
special advisers I mean that old phrase
52:44
of faction advices in fact it was at the
52:48
time no it was her and then it was
52:50
quoted by Lord Fowler I think in in his
52:53
autobiography and also I remember seen
52:55
you on there Brian
52:56
Walden interview when I was doing
52:58
politics a level I think it was the fact
52:59
person who said that it became a
53:01
conflict was it Lawson anyway those kind
53:05
of people used to be shadow figures
53:07
nobody had hurdles they were in the
53:09
background Rose mr. Cummings I think
53:11
it’s a household name unusually and has
53:14
he thought any some special exceptions
53:16
of what the usual specializes yeah no
53:22
and I’ve served seven prime ministers
53:25
many of them have some very big
53:26
personalities as advisors that that
53:30
original phrase was because an advisor I
53:32
think Sir Alan Walters became a very
53:34
public fence at the time but I can think
53:37
of advisers who say during labor
53:39
governments who became quite well-known
53:41
political personalities and an advisor
53:44
to conservative it’s it’s a common
53:46
political feature the rules apply to all
53:48
of them advisers well they’re either
53:57
special advisers CODIS is is a separate
53:59
doctor so it’s just it’s a separate dog
54:01
because there are particular rules
54:02
obviously about its raised eyebrows that
54:04
he was granted a security pass when he
54:06
has been found in contempt of he’s got a
54:09
pass to here he’s got one of the I’m
54:12
sometimes criticized for having too many
54:14
responsibilities but for tree Parliament
54:15
and its axis is not one of them
54:26
I mean I can imagine I’d be in trouble
54:28
with the speaker if I started to suggest
54:33
okay question for someone okay
54:38
did the recent sacking of the Chancellor
54:40
of the Exchequer the special advisor
54:42
infringe her civil service employment
54:44
rights to be marched out of the building
54:46
at gunpoint by only Edwards on the safe
54:51
side with special advisers that was not
54:52
a good look
54:53
so that I think so Stephen house the
54:55
Deputy Commissioner of the Met has
54:56
responded to some MPs correspondence on
55:00
exactly that matter I think some of the
55:03
more salud descriptions of that in the
55:09
press I think you should refer to his
55:11
letter on that on the police officers
55:14
police officers role and so he’s
55:18
responded to that and what he said in
55:20
that as I saw I was gonna put it
55:23
slightly less vividly but what he said
55:25
it about is the police officer she
55:27
didn’t have the right pass to get out of
55:29
the turnstile she was getting out of the
55:31
police officer facilitate could have
55:32
through that because there was no-one
55:33
else available that’s essentially what
55:34
Stephen House’s letter says but I refer
55:37
you to his letter because he’s he’s
55:39
responsible he is responsible for that
55:42
as for the as for the the case itself we
55:48
don’t I’m not gonna be drawn on
55:50
individual personnel cases because
55:52
obviously there’s a there’s a degree of
55:54
privacy around the individuals we have
55:56
to protect so has there been an
55:58
investigation launched well I think I
56:02
think the facts of the case are clear
56:05
they want to get I don’t want to be
56:06
drawn into individual personal case
56:08
because that might well that might yet
56:11
still be the subject of further action
56:15
so you can’t say if there’s an inquiry
56:17
ongoing
56:18
we don’t we don’t comment on individual
56:20
cases I can talk about the general
56:21
principles and the rules but we never
56:23
comment on individual cases just the
56:26
only ways I’ve been able to comment on
56:27
the involvement of the police officers
56:29
because the Steven house has actually
56:30
responded to I forget which MP but
56:35
anyway in this kind of instance well
56:39
particularly with this one
56:41
Helen McNamara who is the the exam of
56:45
the civil service do you discuss these
56:47
things with her and have you had a
56:48
conversation about this case well
56:50
hundred Helen McNamara is my one of my
56:51
closest colleagues she’s the deputy
56:52
secretary to the cabinet and oversees
56:54
the propriety and ethics um team among
56:57
other things and of course I discuss all
56:59
all issues with her but I don’t want to
57:01
again I’m not going to in a Polynesian
57:03
committee talk about the internal
57:05
conversation again I don’t want to this
57:11
is something I speak to all the time I
57:13
talk to her about all sorts of things I
57:14
don’t I really don’t think I should be
57:16
disclosing internal I’ve given you every
57:17
opportunity for impartiality and the
57:24
diligence of the civil servants so I’m
57:26
surprised that Dominic coming here is a
57:28
hired gun that’s good authority to sack
57:31
somebody in a senior position of special
57:34
adviser to chance of this Jake I’m sorry
57:39
the microphone sorry I thought
57:40
microphone quite so special advisers are
57:43
essentially a hybrid they are temporary
57:45
civil servants in employment terms but
57:47
they serve at the discretion of the
57:48
prime ministers as you like ministers
57:50
they serve at the discretion of the
57:51
prime minister so for Minister resigns
57:52
the special advisers resign as well and
57:55
then there are particular this is a
57:58
particular package which applies to
58:01
special advisers so any special adviser
58:04
serves at the discretion of the prime
58:06
minister and in the end it’s the prime
58:08
as well as supporting their individual
58:10
secretary of state or cabinet minister
58:13
and in the end is a decision for the
58:15
prime minister whether
58:16
– terminator so you’d miss beta Dominic
58:19
comments dislike other civil servants
58:21
no one can sacked civil servants except
58:26
through the disciplinary procedures that
58:29
we have discussed and that’s that’s done
58:31
within the civil service code and of
58:33
course within employment law beacon site
58:37
special advisors well as I said the
58:39
Prime Minister has the special adviser
58:40
server the discretion of the Prime
58:42
Minister so it is the Prime Minister’s
58:43
decision as to whether special advisors
58:46
continue or not and the generally for
58:49
example of ministers resigned the
58:50
special advisors are expected to resign
58:51
the centre you just explained what is
58:55
the correct procedure for investigating
58:59
and taking action following a suspected
59:02
unique by a special adviser exactly the
59:06
same as it would be for and you were not
59:09
so we didn’t investigate the leak itself
59:11
of course and if that investigation took
59:13
us to a special advisor as the source
59:18
then the then the the the
59:22
in that case then the special adviser
59:26
code applies and the prime minister
59:28
would need to make a decision as to
59:30
whether to continue without special
59:31
advisors employment and the proper
59:35
procedures were followed in this case
59:36
well again I don’t want to comment on
59:38
the individual a case mr. chairman
59:40
because of there’s a standard there’s a
59:44
standard was my comment on while I might
59:46
have to comment in others and we don’t
59:47
comment on individual personnel cases
59:49
not least because we need to leave some
59:51
latitude for the individual concern to
59:53
pursue whatever cause of action you may
59:55
wish that you said a moment ago that the
59:57
special advisers are employed at the
60:01
pleasure of the prime minister and it’s
60:04
the Prime Minister’s decision whether to
60:06
that a special advisor go was the Prime
60:10
Minister aware of the decision being
60:12
made on his behalf at the time it was
60:14
made well again I don’t want to comment
60:16
on the individual case but it’s it is I
60:19
think you’ve set out the formal position
60:21
very clearly and I don’t to be drawn to
60:24
the individual case it wouldn’t be right
60:26
for me to do so thank you
60:27
special advisors to be eligible for
60:30
membership with the FDA the trade union
60:32
and if so could they see representation
60:35
from the FDA I don’t think so but I must
60:41
admit it hasn’t because the FDA really
60:43
represents permanent civil servants but
60:45
I must admit not a question that I’ve
60:47
ever I’ve ever confronted so perhaps I
60:51
could take that away mr. Dawkins and
60:52
just make sure that I’ve given you the
60:54
correct answer but I understand well I
60:55
think would be would be no well I think
61:01
it doesn’t mean well to the second part
61:03
of the question of course anyone is
61:05
entitled to have representation in an
61:08
employment case and that’s a that’s a
61:10
that’s a right of every employee and
61:12
employment law covers every one but that
61:14
specific question on the FDA I think is
61:16
probably no but let me check any but
61:19
presumably any special advisor could be
61:20
a member of any union yes in a in a
61:25
personal in a personal capacity but I
61:26
was assuming that mr. Hopkins was
61:28
talking about the FDA as the civil
61:29
services as one of the civil services
61:31
years I don’t I genuinely don’t know let
61:33
me check I don’t I’m not aware of that
61:35
ever having been the case I’m I think my
61:37
presumption is no no what I’m aware of
61:44
our special advisors at the level within
61:47
government whereby that they shouldn’t
61:49
be a member of the political parties
61:53
special advisors sometimes are and
61:55
sometimes on and of course civil
61:58
servants are permitted to be members of
61:59
political parties they just not
62:01
permitted to take place in national I
62:02
take parts or in national political
62:04
activity can we move on mr. Jones
62:10
– dunno deal planning the Prime Minister
62:14
took office on the 24th of July having
62:16
made it very clear during his campaign
62:19
for election as leader the third
62:21
Authority that he intended to ensure
62:23
that the UK left the European Union on
62:26
the 31st of October as he put it no ifs
62:30
no buts what major new major programs
62:34
familial planning had been introduced
62:36
since he took office
62:38
don’t might want to add something
62:40
perhaps I can just make a couple of
62:42
points first of course we were already
62:44
doing a great deal of no deal planning
62:45
we did it for the Indus in the spring
62:49
and so most of the portfolio I think
62:51
nearly all of the portfolio is
62:52
essentially picked up plans that were
62:54
already already being made there are no
62:57
two wholly new areas that we weren’t
63:01
bushes to correctly we changed the
63:04
governance the central governance around
63:06
it so Michael Gove as Chancellor Duchy
63:08
of Lancaster is that portfolio is
63:12
focused on no deal preparations no deal
63:14
prepare is indeed brexit preparations
63:16
operational preparations and
63:17
preparedness not just not just New Deal
63:20
illness and new cabinet governance
63:21
around it and in general of course we’ve
63:25
as you have seen there’s been a really
63:29
fueling of many of the programs that we
63:32
already had in place in order to ensure
63:34
that we’re ready on the 31st well to the
63:37
new the new governance has taken place
63:41
there’s been a new cadence to the civil
63:44
service arrangements and organization
63:48
has not been unhelpful frankly to inject
63:50
new energy into the system there has
63:54
been a major new communications plan
63:57
launched both public into the business
64:00
to ensure business readiness and of
64:02
course because there’s been more time
64:03
there have been more there has been more
64:05
progress both on the building of systems
64:08
the minimum viable products are a little
64:10
better now than they were there’s been
64:12
continued progress and international
64:14
agreements so there’s been a number of
64:17
things that that have happened by virtue
64:18
of more tie
64:20
and there has been and there have been
64:22
some sort of reshaping a bit of certain
64:24
certain things I mean from the large we
64:27
are now proactively issuing or the corny
64:30
Orie numbers to the small businesses
64:32
that trade to Europe that wasn’t
64:34
happening before there are one or two
64:37
additional funds available for UK
64:40
Nationals in Europe that were not
64:41
available for so there are a range of
64:43
things that have happened whether that
64:45
are different to what had happened but
64:47
these are essentially programs that were
64:49
already in the pipeline that have been
64:51
given new impetus and new governance
64:53
arrangements is that I think in a large
64:55
part that is a true statement partly
64:57
because the civil service as I’ve said
64:59
before was largely ready as ready as it
65:02
could be although I would say to you
65:04
that the communications in particular
65:06
things stand out as a big step change in
65:11
patient energy and and focus actually
65:14
what has happened material materially to
65:19
affect operation yellowhammer plans
65:22
since the new prime minister took office
65:28
well as you recall operation
65:31
yellowhammer is a is a reasonable
65:35
worst-case assumption against which we
65:36
can plan but it brings with it
65:40
operational preparedness on the ground
65:42
for day one and the relatively short
65:45
period thereafter from the 12th of April
65:48
those operational preparedness
65:50
arrangements were stood down largely
65:53
they have been ramped back up again or
65:56
and are in the process of being ramped
65:58
back up again because we have to reboot
66:01
in place the 24/7 operations the control
66:04
rooms and such things
66:06
so sorry to interrupt but could you
66:08
explain why they were stood down they
66:10
were stood down because it was clear
66:13
that a that we that the 31st of October
66:16
was the next point at which we might
66:19
exit Europe with no deal we were ready
66:22
for the 12th for the 29th of March and
66:24
the 12th of April and then the next
66:27
moment was the 31st of October and
66:29
people are working 24/7 and shifts
66:32
and we didn’t want to have them working
66:33
24/7 in shifts between the period of
66:35
April to October so we stood them back
66:37
down the plans existed and the plans
66:40
were getting better and better and their
66:41
best plans were being developed as well
66:43
I continue to be developed I think they
66:45
continue to get better right and so
66:47
we’re now in the process of ramping
66:49
those people and plans back up ready for
66:53
the 31st walk and other now ramped up to
66:55
a level but they were at previously when
66:57
it was thought that we were leaving on
66:59
the 29th of March so the numbers of
67:01
people involved are actually rather
67:02
greater this time than they were the
67:05
last time we are not at the point
67:07
because many of these many of the
67:10
operational teams have to go into place
67:12
relatively proximate to the moment at
67:14
which they are needed so probably in
67:16
October so we’re not in October yet so
67:18
we’re not ready to do that so they’re
67:20
not quite at the place they were when we
67:22
stood them down but they are well
67:24
developed plans that actually rather
67:26
more as 2,600 people been I being
67:30
identified to move around so they’re
67:33
better developed than they were on
67:35
they’re ready to move at the perfect
67:37
time
67:38
thank you just about we talk about the
67:46
ramping up the No Deal here but what
67:48
about and for people abroad in Europe is
67:51
that has that been chopped as well yeah
67:54
I mean a large part of the
67:55
communications that I miss you’re a part
67:57
of the communications that I’ve
67:58
mentioned are in are intended for UK
68:00
nationals overseas there are large
68:02
numbers of pensioners as you know and
68:04
people are working over there so the the
68:07
that the foreign office posts have been
68:09
ramped up as well so that the
68:11
communications can go through those
68:13
places there are targeted communications
68:16
there are funds available to help there
68:18
are societies that deal you know groups
68:23
that deal with those groups of people
68:25
who we are funding to communicate so yes
68:27
the answer to your question is that they
68:29
are being communicated with about the
68:34
decision-making structure the new
68:36
government is introduced how does it
68:38
compare with what existed in the run-up
68:41
to March 30 March 29th because my
68:45
understanding is it’s much more
68:47
ministerial that now but the civil
68:49
service itself was setting quite a
68:52
healthy pace anyway but we just didn’t
68:55
hear so much about it how much I think
68:59
yes it is you’re right mr. chairman is
69:01
now a ministerial it so the CDL Michael
69:03
Gove chairs meetings every working day
69:06
virtually on it new committee called XO
69:10
which has a wide range of cabinet
69:14
ministers on its supported by officials
69:17
and that’s a different approach to the
69:19
way we were doing it in the run-up to
69:21
March when the Ministerial Committee met
69:25
less frequently sometimes on to the
69:27
prime minister’s then prime ministers
69:28
chairmanship and sometimes under the
69:30
vents EDL’s chairmanship largely to
69:32
resolve the big policy questions rather
69:34
than the the operational progress and a
69:39
committee either I chaired John chaired
69:41
or the Dexy secretary Dux TPO so an
69:47
official committee did the assent of the
69:50
operation and it’s it’s it’s a different
69:52
style but and therefore we’ve adapted
69:57
the civil service mechanisms supporting
69:59
xo2 to support that new there has been
70:08
new momentum there’s been new Drive and
70:10
there have been some new programs
70:12
what’s rather pleasing is that the work
70:15
that has been done by the civil service
70:17
in the first instance was being
70:19
displayed to a new group of people and I
70:21
think as I think mark has already said
70:22
the new to a figure have generally found
70:24
that that work was
70:25
of high quality and good work so that’s
70:28
quite pleasing briefly mr. Cohen toward
70:34
the paper in a statement no ifs no buts
70:37
were leaving but within the operation
70:39
yellowhammer
70:40
is there a milestone in there for a no
70:42
go no decision but for no guru this is
70:47
bad mr. pointment you go back to Prime
70:51
Minister loo can Oregon team it was
70:53
surprising can attempted to maintain a
70:55
food supply – you have to change your
70:56
mind honest there are a series of course
70:59
of decision some of which have already
71:01
been taken we have as you have seen we
71:04
contracted for freight capacity which
71:06
might be needed in the event of a No
71:08
Deal on the 31st of October and there
71:10
are a series of such decisions which run
71:12
and that was the first one that popped
71:15
up but there will be a series of others
71:16
going forward I can’t remember them all
71:18
now but that so that we said that the
71:21
our job is to prepare in the event that
71:24
Britain leaves the European Union on
71:26
service without a deal so there will be
71:28
a series of such decisions being taken
71:29
particularly numidia with suppliers if
71:32
it’s between the 1st of October the
71:34
people behind or please Lillehammer are
71:37
convinced we can all supply all the
71:39
medical supplies it couldn’t read right
71:41
device the talks I’m a drain and and
71:43
engine and made the donee yeah what was
71:46
the best decision when you are you the
71:47
position we can go to payments as they
71:49
look this cannot happen um so with
71:52
regard to medical spas particularly
71:54
there’s a structured response which is
71:57
already underway and indeed the freight
72:00
that I’ve discussed is a part of that
72:01
response in addition there’s about four
72:05
more than 400 suppliers that we’re in
72:07
contact with talking about what they’re
72:09
doing to build stocks so that’d be the
72:11
first thing ditto medical devices the
72:14
contingency in the event that the short
72:17
straights and where most of that most of
72:20
those Goods come into the UK and is
72:21
blocked the contingency is the freight
72:23
but there are also air that what the
72:26
culinaire bridge so airplanes being
72:28
contracted and that is a that is in
72:30
process as I speak it hasn’t been
72:32
but there is an average contracting
72:34
process to allow airplanes to bring the
72:36
isotopes in the short cycle emergency
72:40
medical supplies so they so all of the
72:42
steps are being taken in order that we
72:43
won’t run out of medicines in this
72:45
country but but if you get close to that
72:52
date can you go back to the premise and
72:54
say you’ve got to back off for mr.
72:57
because there’s no ifs no buts is that
72:59
one was Red Wings we never closed but
73:01
the people’s health is at risk the 30th
73:03
of October can you go back to and say
73:05
you got a change of mind we can’t
73:09
mitigate every single consequence and
73:11
because some of those things depend on
73:13
others but in the end the the Prime
73:15
Minister the government need to make the
73:17
decision just as the last one did we
73:19
will provide them with the evidence of
73:21
the of the state of National
73:24
Preparedness not just the state of
73:25
government preparations and they’ll make
73:27
the decision our job however as John has
73:29
suggested is to ensure that those
73:31
preparations are in the best possible
73:32
shape and in particular issues like
73:34
medical isotopes and supplies of that
73:36
kind we have the contingency plans in
73:38
place were we to leave without a deal to
73:41
ensure that those suppliers continue
73:43
uninterrupted and I suppose the
73:44
expectation ministers have put on sandy
73:47
put on us put on us in March but of
73:50
course we continue to advise ministers
73:53
on the state of National Preparedness
73:55
and ministers in any government of
73:58
course there need to reach whatever
74:00
political decisions very to the prime
74:01
ministers and the government been very
74:03
clear about the 31st of October
74:05
it’s the decision in international law
74:07
until unless and until change so we have
74:11
to be ready for you told us mitigate the
74:19
consequences of no
74:21
and since then we’ve had all these
74:24
billions of pounds called in what some
74:27
risks of No Deal break see which aspects
74:31
of those kind of communities well what I
74:33
think I was explaining at the time and
74:34
have done one or two further events
74:37
since its making the point that there
74:39
are some there’s some element of of
74:41
National Preparedness if I use that
74:43
phrase there are out with governments
74:44
control and we’re therefore we can’t
74:46
fully mitigate them the communications
74:47
campaign is designed to try and ensure
74:49
that citizens and businesses make all
74:51
the right decisions for the 31st of
74:54
October and as I think I might have said
74:55
in in previous sessions we can push out
75:02
as much information in the most
75:03
effective and professional way possible
75:05
but of course if the front pages are
75:06
telling people something different they
75:08
will make their own decisions according
75:09
to their own appreciation of the impact
75:11
on themselves the impact on their
75:13
business and their appreciation of the
75:15
of the likely outcome so we’re doing
75:18
were communicating with people the
75:20
judgments they make will depend as much
75:23
on their appreciation of the overall
75:24
political position as it will be on the
75:27
information government is proposing that
75:30
they proposing that they take and
75:31
they’ll make they will make rushing
75:33
decisions on that basis that is out with
75:35
that is out without control those are
75:36
individual decisions decisions of
75:38
citizens and businesses second of course
75:40
we don’t yet know exactly what decisions
75:44
the EU will take around
75:46
No Deal preparedness where we have had
75:49
conversations with it we’re not in
75:51
formal negotiations we’ve had
75:52
conversations with them of course again
75:54
a lot will depend on the overall tenor
75:56
of our negotiations those are things
75:59
that we can do contingency planning
76:01
against but if but if for example the EU
76:04
takes a particular position on data
76:06
adequacy or something of that kind then
76:07
there’s only so much we can do and if
76:10
the like limits still a million to one
76:12
well that wasn’t that wasn’t my phrasing
76:15
I think the I think the Prime Minister
76:16
has updated that very briefly was just
76:23
the the website has now been a Bharani
76:28
for nine or ten days the new one yes yes
76:31
the new one huh what sort of impact has
76:33
that had since it was other side so the
76:36
word the front end of the communications
76:39
campaign and it’s going to ramp up from
76:40
here so we’re at the very early stage
76:42
it’s been substantially enhanced the
76:43
website you can do with 20,000 requests
76:46
a second so it’s ready to handle all the
76:51
things it’s got it’s substantially
76:53
upgraded to be more user friendly from a
76:56
user’s perspective so if you’re a
76:57
chocolate go on and you need to know
77:00
what to do then it gives you step by
77:01
step all of those things we’re beginning
77:02
to see very very early no because
77:07
because we haven’t actually gone very
77:10
public with the communications campaign
77:12
that I’ve referred to it’s it’s
77:13
beginning to ramp up from here so I
77:15
think this is all for the next few weeks
77:18
you say could handle 20,000 hits a
77:21
second it’s receiving of the note
77:24
knowing in what the level is I don’t
77:26
have that information would you be able
77:28
to give us a know what I can I can give
77:31
you that it’s done about 14 million
77:35
requests a week that’s what I wanted to
77:37
know that’s great thank you that’s also
77:40
cool yeah do you believe a strong
77:44
Parliament is a help or a hindrance to
77:46
the executive that’s a that’s a small
77:49
question
77:50
well it’s our system of course of course
77:54
a strong Parliament is part of our
77:56
democracy and held accountable and
77:59
Parliament takes decisions a song but I
78:01
think it’s a PhD thesis or maybe one for
78:03
lectures I might give one I’m retired
78:05
rather than
78:17
very briefly I think in common with my
78:21
colleague MPs we’re receiving from
78:24
constituents a great deal of
78:25
Correspondence because they have been
78:29
made fearful that their supplies of
78:31
medicines are not going to be
78:34
forthcoming in an ideal situation are
78:38
you aware of that pressure that is
78:40
coming on to MPs from their constituents
78:43
and the genuine fear that these people
78:44
have and is there some way you can
78:46
address this because your answers today
78:48
probably need to be communicated more
78:52
widely particularly when it comes to
78:54
isotopes isotopes and short-lived
78:57
medical I’m only a general sense on the
79:02
basis of perceived demand and therefore
79:06
orchestrated capacity I’m not aware of
79:10
the individual things but to the extent
79:12
that people are concerned I will take
79:14
that away and make sure that we a we are
79:17
sure that we’re dealing with all of this
79:19
concerns because I think I believe we
79:20
are because it’s an aggregated demand
79:22
and supply and then see if we can
79:25
orchestrate a communications campaign in
79:26
order to and then people’s mind more at
79:28
rest and particularly the pharmacies I
79:30
think are coming under a great deal of
79:32
stress they’re getting a lot of
79:34
inquiries on this front now and I gather
79:37
some of the specialist magazines have
79:39
been putting up well in my constituency
79:43
they put up in April word saying don’t
79:45
blame us for medicine shortages right to
79:47
your MP but in fact some of the
79:50
shortages have been due to
79:51
pharmaceutical companies and their
79:53
manufacturing elements I really do feel
79:55
this area needs a great deal of increase
79:58
in terms of communications if you could
80:00
do that and write to the committee as to
80:01
what you’re doing that would be very
80:03
helpful
80:03
could I just yes miss again
80:07
with apologies for coming in again but
80:09
there’s one example specific example
80:12
that I had in a public meeting the other
80:13
day where we were discussing brexit and
80:15
that was the issue of epi pens which are
80:18
used in in the case of anaphylactic
80:20
shock apparently these not readily
80:23
available that they’re having to cope
80:26
with having to cope with use ones on
80:29
inquiry discovered that epi pens are
80:31
actually manufactured in the United
80:33
States and there’s a worldwide shortage
80:35
of epi pens completely unrelated to the
80:38
EU the problem is that these issues are
80:40
becoming conflated and I really think
80:44
that’s some form of it information
80:45
campaign as Dame Cheryl says would be
80:48
really very helpful yes make a jacketed
80:51
standpoint for it events or ask a
80:55
question is there any evidence that
80:58
countries of the European Union in the
81:00
other countries or the European Union
81:01
itself actually wants to frustrate the
81:05
vital medical supplies getting to the
81:07
United Kingdom and if such a shortage
81:10
was anticipated in any way what what
81:14
evidence is there that they would not
81:15
want to want to cooperate in order to
81:17
make sure that we had medical supplies
81:20
to make sure we have I think I think we
81:23
need we need to distinguish between
81:26
deliberate or inadvertent it is possible
81:28
that supply chains could clog up not
81:31
because there’s any desire to do so but
81:33
just because for example the short
81:35
streets are just flowing out with
81:38
traffic or and so on so these procedures
81:40
are designed not against a deliberate
81:43
attempt by anyone to try and restrict
81:45
medals as applies but if they
81:46
inadvertently
81:47
of the side effects of other blockages
81:53
at the border or whatever had that
81:55
effect but there’s absolutely no
81:57
indication of that and one wouldn’t
81:59
expect it so these are contingency plans
82:01
drawn up in order to ensure that the
82:03
supplies continue smooth but given that
82:05
the director of the County port has said
82:07
the traffic will be free-flowing and
82:11
there will be no unnecessary checks
82:14
unless somebody insists on applying
82:17
extensive unnecessary checks these the
82:20
scenarios seem rather unlikely but our
82:23
job our job is understanding exactly and
82:25
it doesn’t have to be reasonable
82:27
worst-case and as you know that flow
82:29
through the short streets is at such a
82:31
high level of intensity that even a
82:34
handful of necessary checks does have an
82:36
effect but but a great deal of work has
82:38
been done both sides the friendship now
82:40
invested in infrastructure what is the
82:51
current status of the HMRC
82:54
and border force capabilities for
82:56
conducting additional checks at the
82:58
borders what a lot of work has been done
83:01
I mean I just to get this in the right
83:03
perspective the as Marcus said any
83:06
shortages will not be as a result of
83:08
people wanting to post shortages on the
83:10
UK but they may arise some may arise as
83:13
a result of clogging up of the various
83:16
critical bridges between continental
83:18
Europe the interfaces between
83:19
continental Europe and the UK the French
83:24
have said that they will do checks for
83:26
things going into France and therefore
83:28
our concern is to make sure that all of
83:30
the lorries and trucks going into France
83:31
have the right paperwork and such things
83:33
so that of course comes to the border
83:36
force and HMRC is preparing us so a
83:38
number of things have happened for
83:41
instance we have introduced a series of
83:44
pop up checking points 29 so far
83:49
identified we’re looking toward 100 all
83:53
around the country so that trucks on
83:55
their way to the port can be checked
83:57
that they have the right paperwork so
83:59
they don’t get holed up in France and
84:01
therefore don’t cause a back up border
84:04
force will man those those posts they
84:07
have hired about 900 people since last
84:10
March they are funded for another
84:12
thousand of which about 200 to 300 are
84:15
in place
84:17
and there and they’ll and they’re
84:18
building for the rest in order to man
84:20
those pop up places then there are a
84:25
series of six I think under something
84:31
called Operation brach which is that in
84:32
the event that Dover does start jamming
84:34
up there are places to put trucks
84:37
there’s eleven thousand places to put
84:39
trucks in and tiered manner and again
84:41
there will be people in those truck
84:43
stops to check the paperwork or to allow
84:46
people to help help people complete the
84:48
paperwork so that when they do get over
84:49
to the other side they can pass straight
84:51
through so all of these are are the sort
84:54
of things HMRC has ha I think he’s about
84:59
at about three thousand extra people
85:02
thus far plan to get to somewhere
85:05
between five and six thousand in the
85:08
period shortly after day one so we’re
85:11
you can see we’re ramping up both porta
85:13
force and HMRC to in preparation for the
85:16
sorts of things that you’re talking
85:17
about yeah and they’ve just talked about
85:19
the stock pass of medicines so how
85:22
likely is it that we will not have
85:25
enough sufficient stockpiles of
85:27
medicines and well I think all of the
85:30
steps were taking our intended to
85:32
mitigate exactly against not having them
85:35
and that is why controversial though it
85:39
was the first time around it was and
85:41
I’ve said it before in public it was
85:43
exactly the right thing to do to
85:44
contract for extra ferry capacity we did
85:47
a bit late last time we’re doing a bit
85:48
earlier this time and we’re doing it
85:50
therefore in a way that is a little more
85:52
compliant and a little easier to to do
85:55
that is that contract is in standstill
85:58
right now it’ll be awarded in the next
86:00
week or two so that puts in place the
86:02
capacity then of course it’s up to how
86:04
well we can manage the forecasting
86:07
activity around which ports are getting
86:10
jammed where we can buy that extra
86:11
capacity the airbridge does the does the
86:15
emergency short short cycle medicines
86:18
and such things so all of these I can’t
86:20
tell you exactly whether they will
86:22
any issues or not but we’re doing
86:23
everything that we possibly can adults
86:25
mister get against it in a sentence
86:28
given that the CDL and cabinet offices
86:33
is coordinating node in planning
86:36
what does Dec see you do Dex you so
86:42
officials injection in the Cabinet
86:43
Office are working in essentially a
86:44
single collective group so a lot of
86:47
Dexter officials are supporting CDL in
86:49
the operational preparations we decided
86:51
because of the pressure of time not to
86:54
do the traditional big machinery of
86:55
government change because it would have
86:56
disrupted those operations
86:58
so essentially officials index you and
87:00
the Cabinet Office in a session one team
87:03
while supporting CDL on preparedness
87:06
dear lord native Stephen Barclay Dex
87:10
receptive State on the negotiations that
87:12
he is pursuing at his level Deal or No
87:15
Deal and David Frost the prime minister
87:17
sharing his negotiations as well and
87:21
they all work under the supervision of
87:23
Clare Moriarty who’s the permanent
87:24
secretary David Jeff there’s a WMS down
87:26
today actually might already be out on
87:28
that change actually change yes mr.
87:36
Manzoni you described how preparations
87:39
were originally ramped up towards the
87:41
29th of March they were then stood down
87:45
we then had it’s not being ramped up
87:47
again what would be the impact on
87:49
preparations if it were decided not to
87:51
go ahead with EU exit on the 31st of
87:55
October we were pretty good at that by
87:59
now so you know we rob is to get ready
88:04
for the 31st if if it turns out that it
88:06
doesn’t happen on the 31st we will we’ll
88:09
do exactly what we did on the throne at
88:11
the margin the 12th of April which is
88:14
that those people who have moved
88:15
position to be ready in the control
88:17
rooms and such things will over time and
88:20
it doesn’t happen overnight of course
88:21
but over time they’ll be moved back
88:23
depending upon when the next likely date
88:27
might be what’s a bit grand old Duke of
88:30
York isn’t officials getting very fed up
88:33
with it I think as Marcus said the I
88:39
think one of the positives of their
88:43
daily preparation meeting is it does we
88:46
inject energy into a system and it’s
88:48
done that quite effectively action and
88:50
the civil service movers going on mr.
88:55
Cowen thank you very much it’s been
88:58
suggested that the get ready for breaks
89:01
a public information campaign last but
89:04
Dave he remembered was one hundred
89:05
million pounds is designed to serve
89:08
political purposes Bushell responds to
89:10
that the rules that we apply to other
89:13
government communications campaigns to
89:16
this one there are precedents I think it
89:19
was a get ready campaign for entry to
89:20
the silver market there was a campaign
89:22
around the millennium bug and this will
89:27
apply this one operates within all the
89:29
same rules as other some of those have
89:30
been controversial too but this one
89:32
applies the same rules apply would
89:36
review of that change of internal period
89:39
obviously in perder all government
89:42
communications have to be handled with
89:43
particular care and sensitivity and so
89:45
were we to enter a general election in a
89:49
perder period then we would have to
89:51
apply that that lens to it but it is
89:56
possible to continue with information
89:57
campaigns but obviously when part of the
89:59
have to be under great sensitivity and
90:01
care and they beat some adjustments made
90:02
but the very nature of the was get ready
90:05
for blitz at camp in is pretty much the
90:07
you know keep coming cardio wouldn’t
90:10
leave mentality well I think it’s
90:12
actually more about saying to people not
90:14
keep calm and carry on is actually work
90:17
out what it is you need to do for breaks
90:19
until the 31st of October here’s how
90:21
here’s how to find the information you
90:23
need make those preparations I think
90:26
there’s much more outline yeah yeah I’m
90:29
good for what people need to do it is
90:32
possible the new website is really good
90:35
I know I would recommend
90:36
mr. chairman you according to have a
90:38
look at it it is possible to do through
90:39
drop-down menus get essentially the
90:41
bespoke answer to your to your
90:45
requirements whereas with previous
90:47
campaigns just the nature of the
90:48
technology meant we had to say we tell
90:49
everybody everything and of course in
90:53
everything they were more generic this
90:54
is this is like anything the digital era
90:56
enables people to be more self-serving
91:02
to those facts presumably which will be
91:06
careful to the whole agenda see as we
91:07
talked on arrow is that the European
91:11
Conference of Ministers ecmt permits if
91:14
there are eleven thousand three hundred
91:16
eighty two applications and you can only
91:18
allocate nine hundred and eighty-four
91:20
which by Mike quick reckoning means
91:21
we’ve got ten thousand each TV license
91:24
drivers who cannot travel each TV
91:29
there’s actually 1622 permits available
91:32
Aki’s was looking thousand and there’s
91:35
an additional four thousand data to
91:36
ready for short term it’s available or
91:38
six thousand short that they are but
91:40
they are not per driver they are per
91:43
company generally so of course there is
91:47
so there’s the first point the second
91:49
point the European Union has said up
91:51
until December this year that actually
91:54
UK drivers or indeed drivers driving in
91:57
Europe are able to continue as they are
91:59
today so there is a a period on October
92:01
at least where I think that all of that
92:04
can continue of course and discussions
92:08
of course to try to ease that situation
92:11
but that is I mean what you you know you
92:13
have described one of the issues that
92:14
the whole ears are dealing with here in
92:17
Odile brexit situation but I just wanted
92:19
to get the numbers right okay the 60000
92:21
drivers are come from Eastern Europe
92:23
that are having their citizenship
92:24
Croatian well the the civil government
92:30
policy on settlement of course is that
92:31
essentially everyone there’s a
92:33
continuity through that through that
92:36
period and there are many drivers of
92:37
course from Eastern Europe who are not
92:40
who’s who will drive here under their
92:43
existing system so there are series of
92:55
metrics that are being developed
92:57
actually now it’s because it primarily
93:02
directs people to the website we can do
93:04
quite a lot of Analects analytics on the
93:06
website about what journeys are being
93:08
followed how many people leaves
93:10
successfully from that website that they
93:12
find all of the information so there’s
93:14
kind of analytics we can do we can track
93:18
on on a on a business for the business
93:23
groups because we have nine-step what
93:27
they call step by step processes so we
93:28
can track the numbers of the business
93:29
groups who go there we are additionally
93:32
introducing a series of surveys both
93:35
with the public citizens and with
93:38
businesses so that we can routinely sort
93:41
of check where those are and those will
93:44
be wrapped up so there are a series of
93:45
metrics around the success and readiness
93:48
of the population of businesses as we
93:51
launched the campaign okay so so you
93:56
will know that it’s campaign is on track
93:59
and how it meets objectives by those
94:01
very things that those are the metrics I
94:04
mean it like any communications campaign
94:05
these things are a little bit of
94:06
subjective but this campaign as Marcus
94:09
said is is if that we’ve introduced a an
94:12
assurance panel to because it’s been
94:14
done in some some pace we’ve introduced
94:16
a specific assurance panel to make sure
94:18
that it’s got all of the right controls
94:20
and metrics and we it’s done in a
94:21
professional way in addition we have we
94:23
have external auditors checking that
94:25
we’re not you know that the media buyers
94:27
are sensible than for the right price
94:29
all of those normal checks are going on
94:31
and the metrics are being developed as
94:33
we’re speaking okay so what further
94:35
measures will you adopt the businesses
94:38
and citizens are not taking appropriate
94:42
mitigation measures for the No Deal well
94:45
I think I mean the campaign is designed
94:49
to target individuals to make it easier
94:52
for everybody to get there you know
94:56
there’s a there’s an there’s a 60 second
94:58
checker on the website it says if you
95:00
want to come onto this website in 60
95:01
seconds we’ll tell you what you need to
95:02
do by asking a series of questions so I
95:05
think that that it that this campaign
95:07
has been designed to get the maximum
95:10
contact and access to both individual
95:13
citizens and businesses there are lots
95:16
of other things happening there are a
95:18
series of events around the country
95:21
where the forums are being an events are
95:25
being held there are extensive campaigns
95:28
through the various and business
95:29
representative organizations at CBI the
95:31
small business Federation all of those
95:32
are happening so there’s a very very
95:35
significant ramp up of off of activity
95:40
in the end of course it could take it to
95:43
water but you can’t force it to drink
95:44
and you’ll see
95:47
and can I ask how could your
95:52
communications are with members of
95:54
parliament on this subject and if part
95:58
of your communication campaign and I’ll
96:00
tell you why I’ve had an email whilst
96:02
this session is on from somebody saying
96:05
that she’s had a letter from a member of
96:08
parliament saying that No Deal brexit
96:10
would lead to food and medicine
96:12
shortages and this person says it’s
96:16
causing a hysteria and mistrust and
96:20
presenters also in the media are feeding
96:22
through that misinformation it would
96:25
seem to me I can’t verify it but it
96:28
seems a very straightforward email
96:29
that’s come in to me would seem to me
96:31
that we do need to have a clear
96:34
communication strategy with members of
96:36
parliament so that that sort of
96:39
misinformation is not issued to people
96:42
which is also helping cause disquiet and
96:44
fear which we should be a laying at this
96:47
time I’d be surprised if the MP
96:51
concerned was representing information
96:54
they’d been given directly by government
96:56
of course what MPs say to the public is
96:58
a matter for them I think as you said
97:01
earlier I’m sure we do need to try and
97:02
make sure that the right information is
97:04
available to MPs what you will make of
97:06
it of course is then a matter for you
97:08
but the the Chancellor of Duchy of
97:10
Lancaster gave a statement in Parliament
97:12
last week he’s committed to continue to
97:14
keep on updated on this we have a lot of
97:16
correspondence obviously we need to look
97:18
at and see whether there’s anything
97:19
further we can do in terms of pushing
97:22
useful information to MPs what I would
97:26
ask all MPs to do is to advise people
97:27
who have concerns about their own
97:29
situation is to go to the website have a
97:32
look see what they need to do see if
97:34
they still have concerns at at the end
97:37
because that’s that is what that is
97:39
designed to achieve what should they
97:43
serve what don’t you know you guys it
97:45
just straight to Brighton
97:49
about that quite yet yeah very good just
97:54
to be us it was better any further
97:59
questions for you in particular it might
98:02
be expedient for you to take advantage
98:04
of that because I’m sure that other
98:06
matters are waiting for you or thank you
98:11
and for your support for the civil
98:13
service once again
98:14
thank you and if mr. Malzone you can
98:15
stay for a few more minutes because very
98:17
grateful mr. Hopkins we just borrowed
98:21
ain’t shows large applause boy Doug I
98:24
don’t think it’s any evidence that
98:26
British companies want to stop selling
98:27
to the big eat you market and the EU
98:29
companies don’t want to stop selling to
98:32
appreciate very nice British market and
98:35
indeed there is reports that the Calais
98:37
authorities are very concerned to make
98:40
sure that trade flows very smoothly
98:42
because they might lose tray to other
98:44
ports that’s the real concern they have
98:46
anyway and large numbers of Stafford
98:50
transfer between departments and there
98:51
have been changes of permanent
98:53
Secretariat key bricks to departments
98:55
how is the civil service coping with
98:57
this level of churn the level of churn
99:03
inside the civil service and it is just
99:10
under 10% so the movements in the census
99:12
generally is just under 10% if that is
99:14
compared with the outside market which
99:16
is closer to between 16 and 17 percent
99:18
so we we actually in a general sense if
99:22
I look at the total since actually
99:24
pretty good on turn if I go to the
99:26
senior levels the total movement this is
99:31
by the way the movement in the inside of
99:33
ourselves on the outside of this also
99:34
this is still well below the private
99:36
sector the when you include the movement
99:41
intra civil service then you’re getting
99:43
to
99:43
eighteen or nineteen percent at the
99:45
senior civil service level in the Civil
99:47
Service and that begins to be of some
99:49
concern because that is a little bit too
99:51
high we’re doing various things none of
99:54
which is a quick fix but we’re doing
99:56
various things in the short term we have
99:57
various retention allowances for
99:59
particularly pivotal roles we have
100:02
introduced for brexit and for the
100:05
European exit preparations particular
100:07
cuz of course people get up to speed and
100:09
in the normal way of the source those
100:10
would then be inclined to go and look
100:11
for something else so we’re holding them
100:13
in place a little longer with some
100:14
financial incentives which are all
100:16
approved and and and are being utilized
100:19
so we’re doing some things in the short
100:21
term in the long term as you know
100:24
because we’ve spoken about this before I
100:25
we’re building career paths which look
100:28
different for civil servants we are
100:31
starting to introduce the culture which
100:34
which values experience as opposed to
100:38
just pure intellect all of those things
100:40
are being put in place in the long term
100:42
with some success we I mean there’s ten
100:44
or twelve professions now which have
100:45
defined career paths defined
100:46
accreditation levels we’re putting
100:48
remuneration patterns in for some of
100:51
those professions all of that is
100:53
happening in the long term now the
100:54
permanent secretary level actually if
100:57
you examine what’s happened in the last
100:58
twelve months
100:58
I think there have been five there have
101:01
been six appointments and five sectors
101:03
leaving that’s about average if there’s
101:06
about 30 odd third secretaries that have
101:08
five-year contracts bearing so there’s
101:10
nothing actually out of the ordinary in
101:13
this matter of course it’s more acute
101:15
where particular posts move but actually
101:19
we’ve handled that I think relatively
101:21
smoothly there’s a matter which I’ve
101:25
raised a number times in this committee
101:26
in different settings different context
101:28
and that is the retention of corporate
101:31
memory within us or my service what is
101:33
the source of doing to ensure that
101:35
corporate memory is not lost during the
101:38
changes Livington
101:40
so look in general I agree with you and
101:44
we’re trying to put in place long term
101:45
structures which adjust this and as the
101:48
chair knows well we are reintroducing
101:50
institutions in some senses which are
101:53
intended to do that ever civil service
101:55
Leadership Academy which is a little bit
101:56
nicely but it’s building in strength
101:58
which is intended to embody the
102:02
corporate memory the corporate
102:03
leadership philosophy the corporate
102:05
knowledge that’s building quite well
102:09
we’re getting increasingly coherent I
102:11
think with with the civil service
102:13
leadership training and the and the
102:15
various development processes as a civil
102:18
servant progresses in the system so I
102:20
think it is an important aspect we need
102:24
you know we’re on we’ve now appointed a
102:28
head of that civil service Leadership
102:30
Academy who is now making the case to
102:33
strengthen it and deepen it find a place
102:35
for it so that it’s got a place as
102:37
opposed to multiple that sort of thing
102:39
so I think this is a building agenda
102:43
what’s happened to the Europe unit that
102:46
possessed all the corporate knowledge
102:49
about the negotiations because it seems
102:51
to be in a dramatic reduction in the
102:52
number of people well it’s only it’s a
102:53
bit it’s a bit it just looks like it as
102:57
Marcus said actually what we’ve done is
102:59
we’ve we’ve we have created a single
103:02
body of capability harped it index ooh
103:06
so that those and that does both
103:09
implementation and negotiation so the
103:11
capability still exists the sole service
103:13
is still supporting what used to be
103:16
sitting in the European just existence
103:18
so the report in The Times this morning
103:20
but some however this is evidence of the
103:23
government’s lever is not right because
103:25
it was it is it like all these things
103:27
it’s a sort of partial truth that it is
103:29
true that there are very far fewer
103:31
people in the Europe unit today it’s
103:34
just that the support is coming from a
103:35
different but it’s just as many people
103:37
support him there just if that is
103:38
probably more probably more thank you
103:42
memory theme little further the very
103:46
simplest level just recording meetings
103:49
proper note-taking recording of
103:51
decisions and it’s not just for today
103:54
and making sure that government works
103:57
efficiently but also for the historical
103:58
record is very important people like me
104:00
are very interested in the 30-year rule
104:02
and what was said 30 years ago and I
104:04
think you civil servants and politicians
104:06
are conscious of the fact that they are
104:08
going to be recorded and it will be lit
104:10
on the historian oh good that’s very
104:12
important very part of our our
104:14
government tradition and very strong
104:16
would you agree with that in general I
104:19
think it’s more difficult these days
104:20
because in the digital age as you know
104:22
the records are rather more difficult to
104:24
and we’re doing work very hard to try to
104:26
make sure that we can accommodate that
104:27
in the digital age with this my final
104:31
question what are you doing to minimize
104:33
the disruption to other work of the
104:36
Civil Service the result of staff moves
104:37
and preparations for an OD Obrecht
104:44
it’s obviously having an impact and we
104:48
are though taking quite a lot of effort
104:51
to make sure that priorities are being
104:53
sifted through that we’re continuously
104:56
only doing the most important things and
104:58
I’ve always said a too much is going on
105:00
and the prioritization never takes place
105:02
unless it has to we’re in a situation
105:05
now where it’s actually having to take
105:07
place because we are moving large
105:09
numbers of people around there are close
105:11
to 17,000 civil servants working on
105:13
brexit today and of course that means
105:17
that other work is not taking place but
105:18
the priorities are taking place this
105:20
government has outlined its priorities
105:21
those activities are still taking place
105:23
that universal credit is still rolling
105:25
out the transformation of the civil
105:26
service is still taking place but
105:27
there’s undoubtedly a lot of other stuff
105:29
that it’s not visible from the top or
105:32
that is not taking place because there
105:34
are 17,000 people working abrasives man
105:36
and actually I don’t think that’s a bad
105:38
thing
105:38
more prioritization I would terribly
105:41
support is it possible after breakfast
105:43
it’s the numbers involved were steadily
105:46
declined because most of the work would
105:49
have been done but is that is that I
105:50
think well we’ve got to we are beginning
105:53
now to think about some of that it’s
105:55
early stages but I do think there’s no
105:56
question that that there will be a bulge
105:58
while we’re dealing with the issue does
106:02
your but then I think we’ve got to get
106:04
clear about what happens beyond across
106:11
all departments in brexit planning’s
106:14
hope said yes I ever actually put down a
106:17
load of written questions about Dec sue
106:21
in particular about retention churn
106:24
length of service type of contracts that
106:28
kind of thing and I just wondered it
106:31
came out on Friday that Dexy staff have
106:33
had a bigger pay rise than anyone else
106:35
in the civil service 7.6% and I think
106:38
the cumulative award more like 11% which
106:40
way exceeds 30 percent
106:43
there are a number of there are a number
106:49
of departments you have distinct pay
106:53
arrangements detective is one of them
106:56
DWP is another there are FCO is another
106:59
there are several departments actually
107:01
because in the last period
107:05
there has been in a an arrangement where
107:10
provided you can make a case that the
107:14
the funding is still only 2% this is
107:17
actually one percent attrition the
107:18
funding available is one percent
107:20
provided you can make a case for
107:22
productivity or other means that DWP did
107:25
it because they were out of step with
107:27
HMRC for their larger workforce so
107:29
provided you make case through
107:30
productivity that you can afford a
107:32
higher pay deal those have been approved
107:34
by the Treasury they need a business
107:36
case they need to be approved they need
107:37
all of that stuff that has been you know
107:41
what has happened over the course of a
107:42
period of time so there are a number of
107:44
those in existence and Dexy was just the
107:46
most recent it’s only particular Dexy
107:49
relate brexit related reason my bones
107:51
well I mean I think the the cases are
107:53
made up on their own merits DPP as I’ve
107:58
said was because it was out of step at
108:00
an operational level with HMRC for Dec
108:02
so it will be that this is a high stress
108:04
high pressure environment and and
108:06
they’re attempting to reduce the churn
108:08
and the turnover and of course people
108:10
need to be rewarded for working long
108:12
hours and weekends you know and all of
108:14
that and I think that’s probably an
108:15
actually studied the decks of business
108:17
case but I was aware that it was
108:18
happening and the 600 staff is that kind
108:20
of about average indexes yeah but no let
108:24
me know the departments are very wildly
108:26
small to me this wellness there’s tens
108:29
of thousands and in HMRC entity do you
108:32
know how much the government spent on
108:33
consultancy services and temporary sort
108:36
of agency type start to help with breaks
108:38
it preparations of course well as you
108:40
know I’m sure you know this is a
108:41
slightly complex question I do know how
108:44
much we have we in the cameras have put
108:45
in place a particular framework for
108:47
consultants and
108:49
stance on on brexit up to today 55
108:54
million pounds of something spent in
108:56
about 75 million pounds has been
108:57
committed under that framework there are
109:00
other measures of how much consulting
109:03
has been used in the NAO recently issued
109:05
reports at 1.5 billion in 1718 has been
109:07
used in consultants and what that
109:09
through up is a is a complexity in how
109:13
we record consultants absolutely the NAO
109:16
number included professional services
109:19
and it was on Bravo and it was on 220
109:22
government and associated bodies so what
109:26
we’re actually doing to resolve all this
109:28
is to is to really reassure some
109:31
guidance from the Cabinet Office about
109:33
what is consulting what is professional
109:35
services what the controls should be on
109:37
those but I can tell you that 55 million
109:38
pounds were 54.8 or they can spend on
109:41
consultants from taxi was originally
109:44
envisioned as a kind of temporary
109:45
department a lot of those people had
109:47
contracts up to the 29th of March which
109:51
will have been extended I don’t know
109:54
that they had the contrast I think they
109:56
might they might have been loner I’m a
109:58
of course they get most of everything
110:01
there’s no discussion that dexon is
110:04
going to be permanent we haven’t changed
110:05
the point of view yep see you don’t have
110:09
a lifespan in business for that
110:10
department you tell me okay never and
110:14
the NAO in 2019 so in June of this year
110:19
did find a mismatch between kavanah
110:21
Cabinet Office analysis of what the bill
110:24
is and the individual departments I’ve
110:28
even been able to reconcile well we have
110:30
reconciled it and as I’ve just mentioned
110:32
that the NAO report dealt with what they
110:36
call professional services of course of
110:38
which consulting his son and they took
110:41
it off the Bravo system which is the big
110:43
government-wide accounting system and
110:46
they counted and it was at 1.5 billion
110:50
what it threw up was that the there was
110:52
a there was a lack of clarity
110:56
definition between consulting and
110:57
professional services so some of the
110:59
professional services for instance were
111:00
some of the mo D suppliers so we are
111:04
getting underneath it it’s taking a
111:05
little time but the cabin office is I
111:07
think in the course of next month due to
111:09
issue some new guidance which will
111:10
clarify this and get a better grip
111:13
across government on professional
111:15
services and so we have a better idea
111:17
spend XE than other departments for
111:20
these unelected bureaucrats which the
111:22
whole thing which need to get rid of I’m
111:25
sorry I only understood that question XE
111:27
had more of these consults in its agency
111:29
staff hourly paid daily paid different
111:31
rates I’m not not I’m not aware that
111:33
they’re uniquely have I mean the the
111:35
numbers that I’ve discredited our across
111:37
government as a whole there have been
111:38
about a thousand people deployed and and
111:41
about just under 160 engagements and
111:44
they’re all across government they’re
111:45
not uniquely in depth so I mean I might
111:47
have an answer back so I didn’t put all
111:48
these down but I just don’t know if we
111:50
have the plug pulled today if I’m
111:52
overseas and just last week how
111:54
confident are you that you have the old
111:56
sorry looks like you’re moving the gives
111:58
you the right thanks essentially to
112:00
understand and improve efficiency of
112:03
government consultancy spending as I say
112:05
the purpose of brixon was to get rid of
112:07
unelected bureaucrats I’m confident that
112:12
we are getting better and as I’ve said
112:15
we’re going to reissue some guidance
112:17
which we’ll get underneath this
112:19
definition of professional services
112:20
consulting and it was thrown up by the
112:21
any reported affair and and you know
112:24
what there was there was a mismatch and
112:26
we just need to get better and the
112:27
guidance will be coming out in the next
112:29
few weeks
112:33
an on brexit question mr. Jones yes I’m
112:40
sure that you saw the report in The
112:42
Times last month about action fraud
112:45
which I think by any standards was
112:48
extremely disturbed action thought is of
112:51
course the telephone line that deals
112:54
with reports of fraud and I believe
112:57
handled about 500,000 cases last year
113:02
The Times report indicated that poorly
113:07
trained call handlers were dealing with
113:10
reports from the public that they dealt
113:15
with these complaints in a highly
113:16
unprofessional manner people were made
113:19
fun of they were called such things as
113:21
morons screwballs psychos that call
113:27
handlers didn’t actually identify to
113:30
call us that they were not police
113:31
officers many people including a
113:33
constituent of mine as a professor of
113:36
investigative psychology thought he was
113:38
dealing with police officers when he
113:40
rang actual floor and they never
113:42
actually revealed that they’re not
113:43
police officers and that they don’t
113:46
actually reveal to callers that very
113:48
probably their complaints will not be
113:51
investigated now actually Ford has
113:55
overseen by the City of London police
113:56
but it’s managed on a day to day basis
113:59
by concentric an American company with a
114:04
previous unfortunate record in handling
114:07
government contracts the government are
114:11
sure to be extremely concerned about
114:13
this report what is it doing to ensure
114:17
that people who often frequently
114:20
distressed quite naturally are getting a
114:23
proper level of service from what they
114:25
believe is a police telephone line well
114:28
as you say I’d say this is a City of
114:30
London Police contract which is devolved
114:35
from government it’s not to say that the
114:37
Home Office don’t have an interest and
114:38
have taken an interest in sine as I
114:40
understand it Sectary State for the Home
114:41
Office has written to the City of London
114:44
police asking for an urgent review the
114:45
City of London Police have undertaken
114:46
their own review which has already
114:49
resulted as I understand it in some
114:51
personnel actions in that contract so
114:53
that is to do that so that is a that is
114:55
to some degree arm’s length that does
114:57
not mean to say that we’re not
114:59
immediately interested in that so of
115:01
course we are aware of the concentric
115:05
issues there are no concentric contracts
115:09
in government today there were two one
115:13
wizard EFT arms inked body in the second
115:15
one was in eighty Marcion as you rightly
115:16
mentioned the HMRC one was terminated
115:19
early in 2016 because of their concern
115:22
that they were being in a they were
115:25
handling claim you know claimants and
115:27
things inappropriately so that has been
115:29
terminated in fact the and the issue of
115:35
how you handle fraud or how you go and
115:37
collect debts and such things is quite
115:40
live in government that we deal with it
115:42
a lot we have a panel which is to do
115:47
with the with fairness and equity as to
115:49
how we handle those things when we in
115:51
anything that we control and we do
115:53
control these through various ways HMRC
115:55
does its own activity in this regard now
115:59
we also have other entities in
116:02
government and they’re all under the
116:04
auspices of a sort of fairness and
116:07
the panel which oversees this and make
116:10
sure that we do this in a proper way the
116:12
issue of course is that I mean and then
116:14
it is a very disturbing report we can’t
116:21
look at every supplier to every part of
116:23
the public sector we do though and
116:25
increasingly do look at the big
116:27
suppliers to government to make sure
116:29
that they’re behaving properly and well
116:32
we have in central government and a list
116:35
of about thirty of those and in the mo D
116:37
and increasing list and this is a
116:39
program that is building across
116:41
government so that we can increasingly
116:42
get at for the big suppliers to make
116:45
sure that as such misbehavior if you
116:48
like all bad contracting doesn’t happen
116:51
we are rolling out now something called
116:56
the outsourcing playbook which is a
116:57
result of failures in the past has been
117:01
taken about twelve or fourteen months to
117:03
develop with in concert with industry
117:05
with the big suppliers of government
117:07
it’s a collaborative piece of work as
117:08
eleven ten or eleven policy areas where
117:12
between government and industry we’re
117:15
now progressing work to increase the
117:18
transparency to increase the visibility
117:20
to replace the to increase that felt
117:22
accountability and responsibility and
117:24
that better management of all of these
117:26
contracts all of that is taking place
117:28
there was a single incident on
117:30
concentric with city London police as I
117:33
say and it’s been jumped on I’m not
117:35
exactly sure what the City of London
117:37
police the exactly timing for their
117:38
investigation is but I know the Home
117:40
Office is waiting for some answers
117:42
does the concentric remain an approved
117:45
government contractor there well of
117:48
course I mean it’s quite complicated
117:50
this because we’re not allowed to well
117:54
we have strictly under year
117:56
human laws it’s very hard to take
118:01
account of one performance over here in
118:03
a contract over here we have found ways
118:05
of doing it and I I can I think the
118:09
answer to your question is that if they
118:10
were to pop up again we would find a way
118:13
it makes you look at them unless they
118:14
could persuade us that they had got
118:16
better and we are in for our big
118:19
suppliers we’re in a lot of
118:20
conversations about self cleansing as
118:23
you know we’ve had some of that going on
118:24
so that we can be sure that when we get
118:27
supplies into government they are doing
118:29
the job that the public would expect me
118:31
to do on for half of their money whilst
118:33
as you rightly say it’s an arm’s length
118:34
arrangement would you be surprised if
118:37
the City of London police were not
118:40
investigating whether or not concentric
118:42
should continue to be a contractor for
118:44
this very important service that they
118:46
are providing to people who are very
118:48
vulnerable and who quite clearly are
118:51
distraught when it that they call that
118:53
telephone my understanding is they are
118:55
investigating I would be surprised if
118:56
they weren’t yes I would be surprised if
118:58
they weren’t yes thank you is there some
119:02
means of enabling meaningful due
119:07
diligence when a public authorities
119:08
considering letting a contract to a
119:12
private contractor I mean surely there’s
119:15
a central source of information in the
119:17
Cabinet Office about a great many many
119:19
contractors is that not available to
119:21
other public authorities for the big
119:23
most important or strategic suppliers
119:25
the answer to that is yes it is
119:27
available but we don’t cover all of the
119:29
supplies and of course as you well know
119:30
we only begun this in the last two years
119:33
so it’s building okay but I mean if the
119:35
I mean I’m concerned about what you say
119:37
that if there’s a bad experience in one
119:39
department it can’t be shared somewhere
119:40
else we have it’s quite hard to do under
119:43
European procurement laws but we have
119:46
found a way
119:48
but beginning to do that but this is
119:50
fairly recent we’ve been unable to do it
119:52
under the law but how do you do it as I
119:56
was saying I can’t quite remember what
119:57
the detail is because it’s a very
119:58
convoluted process to get so that we can
120:01
actually look at track record over here
120:04
and deploy what a dart system presumably
120:07
it’s designed to stop blacklisting
120:09
illegal blacklisting but are we in
120:13
danger over and over interpreting the
120:15
rules or is it no I think it’s we’ve
120:17
tested it and we’ve been testing it for
120:18
quite a long time and we’ve finally come
120:20
up with this process and it is part of
120:22
the law well I don’t make the obvious
120:26
point pouring performance at concentric
120:32
doesn’t it suggest that such a
120:35
perception conflict should never have
120:36
been helpless in the first place
120:38
they should be undertaken by in-house
120:40
public servants who are publicly
120:42
accountable motivated by the public
120:44
service ethos like your good self and
120:46
others in the civil service big favour
120:50
of a mixed economy whether one
120:52
particular service or not should be
120:54
outsourced or not of course depends on a
120:56
lot of things including by the way the
120:58
quality of the management of their
120:59
service the oversight of any contract so
121:02
I think I’m not gonna make a comment
121:04
about whether this particular service
121:05
should be out sourced or not HMRC have
121:07
certainly taken a decision to bring it
121:09
back in-house we’ll give you some clue
121:11
and I think you know but that doesn’t
121:14
mean to say that there aren’t a lot of
121:16
things that should be outsourced so they
121:17
ask to your question I think is it
121:18
depends on this I think incentives isn’t
121:24
my constituency and I’m concerned you
121:27
talk about outsourcing plea boot without
121:29
be coded yes I would be interested with
121:32
in this boot kaitlin’s which have been
121:34
produced for something to check on the
121:37
management was in a company because I
121:38
fully agree with what the mr. Jordan
121:41
said about the way that people using
121:43
this hill I’ve been treated appallingly
121:45
there’s something was about compre where
121:48
people were actually or he always are
121:50
behaving in that way in the first place
121:52
and I would want to also bring pleasure
121:53
to upon the people who are handing the
121:55
outlines to maintain their jobs
121:57
pay their provision and high
121:59
unemployment more than indicating
122:02
whether or not it in the end the
122:05
guidance is for the deployment against
122:08
the big contract we can’t we cannot deal
122:10
with all of their supplies and
122:12
government I do think this particular
122:14
service happens to be an important
122:16
service and so what we’re having a
122:19
conversation about now is that you know
122:20
we can look at the big suppliers there
122:23
might be one or two highly critical
122:26
services that are done a bit you know
122:28
this committee has also been pushing and
122:30
others on let’s use this and ease so
122:33
this is also balanced but there may be
122:35
one or two specific services this maewyn
122:37
team v1 that is sufficiently concerning
122:40
that we say well actually we need to
122:41
think about that in the same way as we
122:43
do for the big suppliers to see that the
122:45
government contract can kind of a
122:47
company who are not being the living
122:48
wage or offering zerorez contracts you
122:52
know could we have government has
122:56
mandated the minimum wage the living
122:58
wage is a different issue here and and
123:01
we have not at this point
123:04
what contractors pay their employees is
123:07
up to them as long as it’s above the
123:09
minimum wage for the moment there’s no
123:11
undue risk it’s not been possible to see
123:13
people handing these calls are working
123:15
for the minimum wage and there are
123:17
severe it seems to keep their jobs that
123:21
could add to their behaviors and first
123:23
place I don’t know if there’s anything
123:29
more you want to add to what you can’t
123:32
answer about that in writing please do
123:34
feel free to do so and and if we need
123:37
more information we’ll write to you
123:39
thank you very much to do for us this
123:42
morning
123:42
thank you best wishes to all the members
123:47
of your department thank you very much
123:49
and good luck in their weeks months
123:52
order order proceeding has ended