A senior Labour MP has said morality lessons should be added to the national curriculum in the wake of Sir Philip Green’s actions in the BHS scandal.
Work and Pensions Committee chair and Labour MP Frank Field. Credit: PA
Frank Field said Sir Philip’s parents failed to teach him good behaviour and argued schools should teach a moral code rather than a “my-way code.”
As chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Mr Field ruled that BHS was the subject of “systematic plunder” by Sir Philip and his associates.
The retailer went into administration in April, leaving a pensions deficit of £571m, a year after it was sold by Sir Philip to Dominic Chappell for £1.
Outlining his proposal for schools to impart the rules of morality onto 21st Century schoolchildren, Mr Field explained to The Times:
“The Victorians, whatever you thought about them, made a mega thing about developing people’s character.
“These were not just lists of rules, but they became affairs of the heart so you knew instinctively how to behave.
“This is what is so shocking about Sir Philip Green, he doesn’t know how to behave.
“There’s no instinctive belief. His parents didn’t imbue it in him. I’m really interested in how we begin as a society to agree the rules of behaviour again.”
Sir Philip has called for an immediate apology from Mr Field, after the Labour MP accused him of “behaving like Napoleon”, among other insults.
The veteran MP also said Sir Philip was “much worse” than former newspaper proprietor Robert Maxwell, who took hundreds of millions of pounds from the Mirror Group pension fund.