New Labour: Task Forces
This page features the details of the hundreds of business representatives who sit on the Labour Government's many Task Forces, Working Parties, Commissions, Quangos, Policy Action Teams and Forums. There has been a huge increase in the number of these organisations since the Labour Party came to power in 1997 - there are now more than 320 Task Forces, with more than 2,500 members. Tony Blair's 'open' Government is not very open about the Task Forces (not even the Cabinet Office actually knows how many there are!), but we have attempted to track down information about all of his friends from private business. A report by Democratic Audit in 1999 showed that Trade Unions made up only 2% of Task Force membership, compared with 35.5% of places filled by private business.
This proportion is even more pronounced in the Task Forces set up by the DTI and the Treasury - business leaders take up 96 of the 108 places on the Treasury's Task Forces (nearly 90%) and 75% of those at the DTI. Many names come up over and over again - people like Peter Agar of the CBI, Lord Marshall (formerly of BA) and Dr Chris Evans. Companies like BP, Tesco and AstraZeneca have many of their Directors on Task Forces. Rather than publish a list of anonymous names we have pictures, salaries and background details of the people who get on to these Task Forces because they are rich or somebody's boss. Many of Tony Blair's former friends and associates appear in the lists - there is a big cross-over between this section and the donors section. It would seem that if you pay the right people you get a seat at the side of Tony. None of these people are elected, they all all appointed by the Government.