Examining the party manifestos from a charity perspective

We continue to update the VoluntaryNews Election 2015 page.

The major party manifestos have now been published, and we have added links to sector analysis and commentary, including from Charity Finance Group, Charity Aid Foundation, NCVO, ACEVO (charity chief executives). An attempt at bringing key items together, no attempt at being definitive (or balanced!):

  • Labour’s policies of particular interest: repeal of the Lobbying Act and commitment to early intervention both welcomed, Living Wage for public service providers could mean higher wage bills, concern that NHS preferred provider policy might limit charities. various measures to strengthen not-for-profit services for children and young people, restrictions for private schools on rate relief.
  • Green: repealing the Lobbying Act, increasing international aid, support for social enterprises in particular co-ops, working as a strong enabling force for the voluntary sector in government.
  • Conservatives: “resurrection for the Big Society”, 3 days volunteering leave for those in large companies and the public sector, commitments on international aid and growing National Citizen Service, more social impact bonds and payment-by-results.
  • Liberal Democrats: open public procurement for charities, review the Lobbying Act, new and improved Work Programme, new community banking sector.

Also added to Election 2015 are various policy manifestos put forward by voluntary sector bodies. These include:

  • Charity Finance Group has outlined five policy priorities, including a focus on gift aid and irrecoverable VAT and changes in the rules around pensions. 
  • ‘One hundred days for early action – time for government to put prevention first’ has been published by Community Links and Early Action Task Force. NPC’s Chief Exec argues for a revolutionary new approach both in Whitehall and among service providers as the only way to ensure early action makes progress reducing social problems.
  • An article from Cherry Orchard Garden Service puts the case for a new Access to Volunteering fund, as put forward in NCVO’s manifesto, to help with the additional costs in creating opportunities for disabled volunteers.
  • Social Enterprise Scotland and the Health and Social Care Alliance manifestos call on Scottish politicians to commit to greater public participation in politics and democracy.