(4) An Ethical Code
Martin Bell’s 10 Principles
- abide wholeheartedly by the spirit and letter of the Seven Principles of Public Life set out by Lord Nolan in 1995: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership;
- be guided by considered evidence, our real world experience and expertise, our constituencies and our consciences;
- be non-discriminatory, ethical and committed to pluralism;
- be free from the control of any political party, pressure group or whip;
- make decisions transparently and openly at every stage and level of the political process, enabling people to see how decisions are made and the evidence on which they are based;
- listen, consulting our communities constantly and innovatively;
- treat political opponents with courtesy and respect, challenging them when we believe they are wrong, and agreeing with them when we believe they are right;
- resist abuses of power and patronage and promote democracy at every level;
- work with other elected independents as a Group with a chosen spokesperson;
- claim expenses, salaries and compensation openly so the public can judge the value for money of our activities.
These principles apply to personal integrity. Our strap-line reads: We aim to use the system, to change the system, to recover Trust. Its reference to Trust extends these principles into the broader and more complex contexts of societal and global relations. Hence our insistence on articulation by companies of a Declaration of Public Benefit Purpose and on Charters for all public institutions (Provisions III. 13 (g) and (J) respectively of this Declaration).