The UK Lobbying Register, which is owned and operated by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR), has been praised in a report on MPs' Outside Interests published by the Committee on Standards in Public Life.
The CIPR was invited to contribute by the Committee following the success of the UKLR in promoting ethical practice amongst lobbyists. The Committee's recommendations include revising the MP’s Code of Conduct.
The report, which explores the issue of MPs' jobs outside of Parliament, found that nearly 120 MPs have declared total earnings of approximately £279,000 per month. Although these are declared on the MPs' public Register of Interests, the report recommends revising the facility to make it easier for MPs to use and easier for the public to search.
The report specifically mentions the UKLR as “easy to search, and provides information on both individuals and organisations involved in lobbying, as well as those clients of those organisations”. Other recommendations include restricting the types of roles available to MPs as second jobs, which include parliamentary strategists and consultants.
"Trust in our political institutions remains low, so it is crucial that parliamentarians play their part in addressing this through further openness and transparency in relation to their outside interests. MP’s should be honest and also confident that their interests and experiences will benefit their constituencies. This report provides a series of welcome recommendations to ensure this process is clearer for MPs as well as the public. The CIPR was able to point to our experience of encouraging members engaged in lobbying to act with the highest standards of professional integrity". Stuart Bruce Chart.PR, FCIPR, Chair of the Policy and Campaigns Committee.