NAVCA Spring Budget response

Philip Hammond delivered his first budget as Chancellor of the Exchequer. The budget was largely seen as uneventful, with few big announcements. Responding to the Spring Budget, Neil Cleeveley, Chief Executive of NAVCA, said;

“This may have been a slightly more upbeat budget than we have come to expect in recent years but, as hundreds of foodbanks testify, poverty is still at unacceptable levels. Spending cuts are still going too far and hitting these with the least hardest.”

“NAVCA has long advocated for health spending to focus more on prevention and community provision so we are pleased to see extra £2bn investment in social care. We need to make sure that this supports the whole social care system and that includes charities as well as local councils. Likewise the voluntary sector has to be an integral part of the Green Paper on long-term funding for social care promised by Philip Hammond.”

“It was good to hear that the Government Is committed to supporting the NHS Five Year Forward View, which acknowledges that local voluntary and community groups are vital for improving people’s wellbeing.”

“The Chancellor has found a way to help businesses facing business rate rises. Evidence shows charities working in deprived communities are less likely to receive discretionary rate relief than those working in affluent areas. As a signatory to the joint letter to the Chancellor calling for charities to get a mandatory 100 per cent business rate relief, not providing specific help to the voluntary sector is a missed opportunity to strengthen charities supporting the most vulnerable in society.”

An easy to understand round up of the key announcements is available on the BBC news website.