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Voluntary Organisations: Public Service

Volume 461: debated on Thursday 21 June 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of the use of third sector organisations to undertake public functions. (143868)

In December, 2006, the Government published “Partnership in Public Services: An action plan for third sector involvement”. The plan notes that third sector organisations are particularly effective in delivering services where the high levels of public trust, confidence and affection they enjoy are most important. From enabling patient self-care to engaging parents in their children’s education, third sector organisations’ strengths often lie in developing services that empower people and which are tailored to their needs. In addition, third sector organisations play a highly effective role as a catalyst for service improvement. However, the plan also notes that there is variation in the performance of different organisations across all sectors and that opportunities should be open to all without bias to one sector.