The global financial and economic system is in crisis.

Existing economic policies and institutions have overseen an economic system scarred by high levels of poverty and inequality, which is contributing to an environmental catastrophe.

Blind faith in the virtues of markets, and inadequate public control, regulation and accountability of finance are at the heart of the financial crisis. Before the financial crisis, people across the world and in Britain were already suffering from the effects of rising food prices, inadequate essential services and the threat of climate chaos.

There can be no return to business as usual. Fundamental change is needed.

We call on the UK government to show its commitment to putting people first by signalling an historic break with the failed policies of the past, and the start of a new system that seeks to make the economy work for people and the planet.

We call on the government to prioritise the essential changes listed below, as the first step towards building this new system. These recommendations provide an integrated package to help world leaders chart a path out of recession.

Creating a fair, functioning global economy means rapidly addressing climate change. Building a low carbon economy requires massive public investment in decent green jobs and public services. A new green deal cannot be financed without significant tax reforms.

Democratic, transparent and accountable financial institutions are necessary to deliver the changes required. The first step will be a transparent and accountable  process for reforming the international financial system. This will require the consultation of all governments, parliaments, trade unions and civil society, with the United Nations (UN) playing a key role.

We call on the UK government and other countries to seize this opportunity to start building an economy that puts people and the planet first. The policies set out in this paper offer the essential building blocks for undertaking this transformation.

Recommendations for the UK government

Put People First: Ensure democratic governance of the economy

1. Compel tax havens to abide by strict international rules.
2. Insist on fundamental governance reform of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF).
3. Make all financial institutions, financial products and multinationals transparent and publicly accountable.

Jobs: Decent jobs and public services for all

4. Ensure a massive investment in a green new deal to build a green economy based on decent work and fair pay.
5. Invest in and strengthen public provision of essential services.
6. Work to ensure sufficient emergency funding to all countries that need it, without damaging conditionalities attached.

Justice: End global poverty and inequality

7. Deliver 0.7% of national income as aid by 2013, deliver aid more effectively and push for the cancellation of all illegitimate and unpayable developing country debts.
8. Ensure that poorer states are allowed to take responsibility for managing their economies, including controlling cross-border capital flows.
9. Stop pushing developing countries to liberalise and deregulate their economies, and do not attempt to rush through a completion of the Doha trade round, a deal that developing countries have rejected several times.

Climate: Build a Green Economy

10. In addition to the green new deal (recommendation 4), introduce the robust regulatory requirements and financial incentives needed to deliver a green economy.
11. Push for a deal at Copenhagen to agree substantial, verifiable cuts in greenhouse gases, which will limit temperature increases to well below 2┬░C.
12. Commit to substantial new resource transfer from North to South, additional to Overseas Development Assistance (ODA), to support adaptation and sustainable development in poor countries.

Download the full policy platform paper here in Adobe pdf format.

Put People First: the reportPut People First: Ensuring a response to the economic crisis that delivers democratic governance of the economy for: Jobs: Decent jobs and public services for all. Justice: End global poverty and inequality. Climate: Build a green economy.