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Charity Sector: Cost of Living

Volume 736: debated on Thursday 20 July 2023

The Government understand that cost of living pressures are impacting many in the charity sector, which is facing increased demand, reduced income and high running costs. That is why the Government announced a funding package of just over £100 million for community organisations in England.

As the SNP spokesperson, I am more than happy to swallow my principles and join the Minister on that flight to Australia on Monday.

According to the Charities Aid Foundation, more than a third of charities have had to make cuts to their services due to the harm that the Tory cost of living crisis has wrought on their finances. Three in five Scottish charities are worried about struggling to survive. Only this Government have the financial powers to intervene, yet they refuse to do so. Are the Government content to let charities, which all too often ameliorate the failures of the state, fail too?

I simply do not recognise that situation. I have just announced that we have given £100 million, and some of it was Barnetted. I have not heard anything from the Scottish Government about what they are going to do for Scottish charities. Maybe they should follow our example.

The plight of so many charities would be significantly improved if the Secretary of State were to raise the cap on postcode lottery sales, would it not?

I know that my hon. Friend has been campaigning hard on this issue, and we had a Westminster Hall debate on it very recently. I have committed to looking at some of the structures, but we need to see more evidence that the limits already there are not being reached at the moment. I will certainly keep the matter under review.