Giving Compass’ Take:
• The UK’s Labour Party released its own Civil Society Strategy that contains policy proposals to uplift voices in local communities that usually go unheard.
• Why should funders in the UK be familiar with both the current government strategies and what the Labour Party launched, regarding civil society?
• Read about what charities and funders are going to do about Brexit.
Labour launched its own Civil Society Strategy, hot on the heels of the government’s own document, which came out 10 months ago. As charities and funders, you need to know what’s in this new one and, with a knife-edge election widely tipped for later this year, what the difference between the two strategies is.
The first thing to understand is that while the government’s strategy is about ten times longer than Labour’s (clocking in at 123 pages) they both contain substantial policy proposals (though inevitably quite a few less in Labour’s version) and perhaps surprisingly, at times they both talk about similar things.
The two biggest areas of overlap are roughly ‘people’ and ‘places’.
In the government’s strategy there is a focus on young people. It tasks the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Department for Education (DFE) with coming up with some proposals to help young people play a part in shaping the future of our society. £90m is allocated to a new youth organisation to help disadvantaged young people into work, there was a pledge to establish the National Citizens Service Trust as an independent public body. For people of all ages the government pledges to fund the training of 3,500 community organisers by 2020.
Labour’s strategy talks more about people in terms of giving them a say in the way their local communities are run. They want collaborative decision making between public service providers and users, and they see charities as a vehicle for this—especially where service users are vulnerable or otherwise ‘voiceless’. To this end they want to put more charities, community organisations and social enterprises onto Local Economic Partnerships (which could be crucial when it comes to distributing whatever replaces the European Social Fund.
Read the full article about civil society strategy by Tom Collinge at NPC.
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