Malcolm Wicks MP’s Co-operative & Community Benefit Societies and Credit Unions Bill passed the next stage of its Parliamentary journey on Friday. Malcolm gave an eloquent history of the co-operative movement and the recent history of private members’ bills in this area, and announced he was joining the excellent Croydon Savers Credit Union to boot. Malcolm detailed the benefits of the bill, concluding:

Why is the Bill important? It not only offers an opportunity to make much needed reforms to the legislation on co-operatives and credit unions, but modernises the framework and enhances the corporate governance standards for such societies. Renaming and rebranding them will make the legislation easier to relate to, and will provide greater appeal to a new, younger generation of members. The Bill comes at a time when the work of credit unions has never been more important, and when ever more consumers are attracted to the ethos and ethics of co-operation and the quality of the product and services offered by such societies. 

The bill attracted the support of many Co-operative MPs present for the debate, and crucially that of the Lib Dems, the Conservatives and the Government, with a debate ranging from Bob Dylan to wine and Presbyterianism (the Deputy Speaker had to intervene when debate lingered on wine for just a little too long…), and ended in a unanimous vote for its second reading.

Watch the whole debate here: