Monday, February 07, 2011

Reinstate the Ringfence.

FAO: the Department of Communities and Local Government. (Grant Shapps)

I read a response yesterday to an article about Supporting People cuts that said the voluntary sector was corrupted.

The general thrust of the argument; that Government funding of charities was wrong. State funding took away the right of the masses to decide alone which charities prospered or which went under.

Natural selection in the voluntary sector. Get donations from the public or disappear and fold. It is quite a seductive argument.

That is, until you consider the reason why we do not have Capital punishment in Britain. We don't have it because the general public have never been given the opportunity to vote for it. If they were, we'd have state sponsored executions.

Sometimes, doing what is popular is entirely separate to doing what is right. A good political administration would recognise this.

Some of the clients the voluntary sector work with are 'unpopular'. Most people have very little understanding of drug users, offenders and anti social behaviour. Most people wouldn't want their taxes going anywhere near 'these kinds of people'.

This is why the Supporting People ring fence needs to be reinstated. Allow the voluntary sector to keep the lid on the worst excesses and carry on repairing the fabric of our society.

Do the right thing and take your medicine Grant Shapps and we'll do our best to try to cure some of our city and county ills.


  1. I agree.
    The general public are largely untouched by the kind of issues that I see everyday at work. If there is a level of exposure it is to begging in the city centre or someone intoxicated walking around town being a nuisance. What they dont know are the stories of those that organisations like Framework help everyday.
    The service user I first worked with 6 years ago, kept in a shed from the age of 8, welts all over his body from being beaten with the buckle of a belt, never learned to care for himself, he was abandoned, started using heroin at 13 and has continued ever since. I saw him the other day, he is in a hostel and he looks well. He is achieving in his own sense. The hostel he is living in has a had a closure notice issued on it ...... What happens to him? What happens to the other people like him? Who have been failed over and over and over again by our system. The less liberal of us may say "well he had a choice"! Does a child have a choice in being abused? being abandoned? being beaten? So people may read that and think thats an extreme case - its not, there are harder stories, sadder histories and one would hope brighter futures, but only if the services are funded to provide roofs, support and shelter.
    if you care about your community and those that live in it then speak out.
    This could be your child, brother, sister i am talking about one day.....

  2. Well said Sara. The human stories are the most powerful way of raising awareness of these cuts.