The latest cabinet reshuffle which sees Andrew Smith appointed as the Work
and Pensions secretary in the wake of Stephen Byers’ resignation, has been
welcomed by the CIPD.
Formerly chief secretary to the Treasury, Smith replaces Alistair Darling
who moves to the Department of Transport. John Philpott, chief economist at the
CIPD, believes the move could revitalise the department.
"I’m pleased with the appointment as Smith was an instigator in the
move towards full employment through the New Deal. There’s a sense the steam
has gone out of the (Work and Pensions) department and his experience will be
useful," he said.
Responsibility for local government and the regions will now split from the
Transport Department and be handed to Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott.
Stephen Timms becomes the new minister of state for Trade and Industry.
Adult skills minister John Healey leaves the Department of Education and
Skills to become economic secretary at the Treasury. Stephen Twigg or David
Milliband will succeed him in the role.
Smith’s Treasury position will be filled by Paul Boateng, who becomes the
country’s first black cabinet minister.