A petition on fair payment and retentions, representing over 355,000 businesses, was delivered to Theresa May on Monday by Peter Aldous MP and industry leaders including FIS CEO David Frise. Supporters of the Aldous Bill and the petition on fair payments also gathered outside the gates of Number 10, including business owners directly affected by the collapse of Carillion in January.

The second reading of the Construction (Retention Deposit Schemes) Bill which was scheduled for 27 April, has been pushed back to Friday 15 June. The Bill proposes cash retentions be held in trust accounts to protect the supply chain.

FIS members have been writing to their MPs to gather support and other prominent MPs backing the reform include John McDonnell, Rebecca Long-Bailey, Kenneth Clarke, Ed Vaizey, Sir Vince Cable and Green Party Leader Caroline Lucas. Follow the link on the right to download the template letter asking your MP to support the Bill.

Peter Aldous tabled a private member’s bill to protect the millions of pounds of cash retentions withheld from construction SMEs. The Ten Minute Rule Bill will seek to amend the 1996 Construction Act and ensure that retentions within construction are held in a third party trust scheme.

David Frise commented: “The urgent need for reform is clear from the cross-party support the Aldous Bill has. The impact of lost Carillion retention money on apprentices, jobs and investment in the sector is already evident. Holding cash retentions in trust will make sure that the money is safe and does what it is intended to do.”

“The government will surely want to be seen to protect SMEs and to ensure the construction industry is sustainable so it can deliver its ambitious plans for housing and social welfare. SMEs are crucial to the government’s built environment and infrastructure programme.”

“Retentions and delayed payment put thousands of firms at risk of insolvency and undermine their efforts to invest in skills, training and improved productivity.”