Fair Tax Mark subject of Early Day Motion
Petition begins to gather support
The Fair Tax Mark, a joint project between Ethical Consumer and Tax Research UK, is now the subject of an early day motion (EDM) in the UK parliament.
The motion “calls on the Government to endorse the idea of a Fair Tax Mark, to work with its founders to put fair tax at the centre of the corporate social responsibility agenda and to redouble its efforts to clamp down on corporate tax evasion and avoidance.”
The motion was put forward by Caroline Lucas, the UK’s first Green MP. She said of the Fair Tax Mark,
“This is great news for consumers, for transparency and for the principle that everyone should contribute their fair share. Many people would agree that tax avoidance is completely incompatible with companies’ social responsibility, but until now it has been very difficult for consumers to understand who’s paying their taxes and who isn’t. I hope the Fair Tax Mark scheme can have the same kind of impact that Fairtrade has.”
The motion was also sponsored by a cross party group of MPs including Margaret Hodge MP. She said,
“I think this is a fantastic idea. The reaction to the revelations about the tax practices of big names like Starbucks, Amazon and Google shows that this is an issue the public really cares about. Given the choice, many people would prefer to give their custom to a responsible business that does the right thing and pays its fair share of tax. The Fair Tax Mark helps give them the power to make that choice, and seeing customers vote with their feet is perhaps the most effective deterrent there is to companies engaging in tax avoidance or other irresponsible practices”
We are now urging consumers to write to their MP asking them to sign the motion (using the 'Write to them' link below).
You could use the following points from the EDM as a guideline of what to write but please do write your own message as this has a much bigger impact than using a template.
Dear [your MP's name here],
Please support and sign the EDM 1123 which asks the Government to back the Fair Tax Mark – a new initiative that rewards businesses that are good taxpayers.
The Government loses billions each year in corporate tax avoidance and still hasn’t begun to combat the tax abuse of companies such as Amazon and Google.
The Fair Tax Mark, already endorsed by leading professional body, the Institute of Chartered Accountants and 3 pioneering UK businesses, is a positive step that helps rebuild trust between qualifying businesses and concerned consumers.
Thanks for your support,
Use 'Write to Them' to send your letter
The full text of the EDM reads:
“That this House notes that the Government is losing much more than £1 in every £10 it seeks to collect from companies to tax evasion and avoidance; further notes that according to a recent Institute for Business Ethics poll, the public is now more concerned about tax avoidance than any other issue of corporate conduct; shares the public opposition to companies that avoid and evade paying the tax they owe; further notes the emergence of boycotts of companies such as Amazon and Starbucks; welcomes, like ICAEW and others, the launch of the Fair Tax Mark and the certification of Midcounties Co-operative, Unity Trust Bank and others, who have been accredited as seeking to pay the tax that they owe in the right place at the right time; believes that such a mark will usefully provide consumers with the information they need to make ethical purchasing decisions based on the behaviour of corporations, and ultimately lead to additional tax revenue being paid to HM Revenue and Customs; and therefore calls on the Government to endorse the idea of a Fair Tax Mark, to work with its founders to put fair tax at the centre of the corporate social responsibility agenda and to redouble its efforts to clamp down on corporate tax evasion and avoidance.”
Read more about our tax justice campaign including the Fair Tax Mark and Boycott Amazon.
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