The future of the left since 1884

The Fabian Queen’s speech

The Fabian Society proposes a dozen bills as a progressive alternative to today's Queen's speech



Today Boris Johnson’s Conservatives will unveil a Queen’s speech that will reflect an exhausted, mean-spirited government that is out of ideas and has no agenda to change the country.

So what should a government of the left be doing instead? Here are 12 proposals for bills that SHOULD be in today’s Queen’s speech. Each puts in place ideas generated by recent Fabian Society projects:

1. Affordable homes bill – creating the conditions for social housebuilding at scale
Home Front: building a new vision for social housing edited by Ben Cooper

2. Digital for all bill – three new entitlements to bring digital to all: a broadband discount scheme, free devices for those without, and free digital training in the community
Bridging the divide: tackling digital inequality in a post pandemic world by Josh Abey

3. Effective public spending bill – establishing rules and institutions to oversee value for money and high-impact spending in government
Prizing the public pound by John Tizard and David Walker

4. Fair immigration bill – a comprehensive plan to bring fairness and competence to asylum, citizenship and immigration for work, study and family reunion
New Arrivals: a fair immigration plan for Labour by Thom Brooks

5. Good jobs and workplace rights bill – improving employment rights, raising the quality of jobs and strengthening worker representation and social partnership
Sharing the future: workers and technology in the 2020s (chapters 4 and 5)

6. Health equality bill – a mandate to every arm of government and every public service to reduce health disparities
Prescription for fairness: remedying health inequalities in a post-Covid era edited by Steve Bradley and Tom Gardiner

7. Income security bill – reforming universal credit and introducing new income replacement payments when people lose their jobs
Security for everyone and Going with the grain by Josh Abey and Andrew Harrop

8. Industrial strategy and shared prosperity bill – a plan to improve productivity in every sector and region, and fairly share the proceeds
Sharing the future: workers and technology in the 2020s (chapter 2)

9. Sick pay adequacy bill – introducing decent sick pay for all workers
Statutory sick pay: options for reform by Andrew Harrop

10. Thriving early years bill – placing early years at the heart of government with new parental rights, more children’s centres and check-ups, and a new way of funding early years and childcare
Early years commission: a cross-party manifesto

11. Training for adults bill – a new system of entitlements for all adults to train, with the time and financial support they need
Sharing the future: workers and technology in the 2020s (chapter 3)

12. United Kingdom bill – a new constitutional settlement for England, Scotland and Wales within the UK
A voice for the future: how Labour can shape the next twenty years of devolution edited by Martin McCluskey and Katherine Sangster

And to add to that, here are some ideas from Fabian Society projects currently in progress:

  • Good pensions for all bill
  • National social care service bill
  • Regional equality bill


Andrew Harrop

Andrew Harrop is general secretary of the Fabian Society.


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