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Dawn backs responsible local businesses

Local MP praises companies 'leading the way' in the community

Dawn Primarolo, Labour MP for Bristol South, has welcomed the corporate social responsibility programmes of several local companies in a speech at Labour Party conference. Speaking at a fringe event organised by the Industry Forum, Dawn highlighted the important role businesses can play in their local communities, as well as nationally and internationally.

Dawn spoke of her support for Bart Spices and Wates at the event. Speaking afterwards, she said: "There are a wide range of businesses in Bristol South and, thankfully, the majority of them realise they have a responsibility beyond making a profit. I have been particularly impressed by Bart Spices' entry into the Fairtrade market, which ensures a decent price for producers. The company also has a reputation for listening to its employees, which is absolutely essential".

"Wates are improving thousands of council homes in Bristol thanks to the Government's Decent Homes Standard. They are very active in their local community - last Friday I was pleased to attend a community day in Knowle, organised in conjunction with the company. These businesses are leading the way and taking their social responsibilities very seriously", Dawn added.

Paul Drechsler, Chairman and CEO of Wates, said: "Corporate responsibility is fundamenal to Wates' success. Balancing wealth creation with good environmental and social practice produces the most sustainable benefits, both for the communities in which we work and for our company. It's a win-win approach. In Bristol we're improving thousands of properties under the Government's Decent Homes Programme. Working in a long term partnership with our customer enables us to invest upfront in employing and training local people and appointing smaller local suppliers".

Commenting on the importance of corporate social responsibility, Edward Shaw, Chairman of Bart Spices, said: "We believe that we have a vibrant business because staff feel connected and confident that their views and opinions are important and valued".

[26 September 2006]

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