I’m very pleased to say, the Government has actually reacted to pressure from the charity sector and has recently revealed that charitable donations will be exempt from the tax relief cap. The cap, which limited tax relief on charitable donations at £50,000 or 25 % of income (whichever is higher), was announced by George Osborne in March’s Budget and was expected to save the Treasury up to £80m a year. The proposal provoked massive protests from the charitable sector and its supporters, including ‘Give it Back, George’ campaign led by NCVO and CAF gaining huge support.
It’s reassuring to know that public pressure does sometimes work and that policies can be turned around & changed for the better. Just recently, minister for civil society Nick Hurd said ‘it is important that the charity sector draws a line under the row over the tax relief cap on charitable donations so it can work with the government on agendas that really matter for the sector.’ This is very true. The charity sector faces huge challenges at the moment. A new report ‘When the Going Gets Tough’ by New Philanthropy Capital found that 62% of charities surveyed expected to dip into reserves to survive, while 73% cent either planned to make staff redundant in the next 12 months or had already done so and 65% had cut or planned to cut front-line services. Of the charities surveyed, 92% received income from government, with 67% earning more than half of their income from government and 45% cent earning at least 76% cent of their income from government.
These are pretty frightening statistics and the Government really does need to give full support to our wonderful charities that carry out vitally important work and make the UK a better place to live.
Jenny Marsden, Finance Manager