To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what financial support is available to animal sanctuaries and rescue centres during the covid-19 outbreak.
I am very aware of the issues currently facing organisations in this sector with falls in income and pressure on staff. Defra is in regular contact with the main bodies representing the sector, including the Canine and Feline Sector Group, the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes and the equine welfare charities, to understand their position and offer advice. The Government has supported the sector, providing guidance which enables it to continue to operate within the current restrictions which is available here: www.cfsg.org.uk/coronavirus/SiteAssets/SitePages/Home/CFSG%20Guidance%20for%20Pet%20Rescues.pdf.
Where income has fallen we have encouraged the sector to consider all the various financial support arrangements already announced by the Chancellor, and issued guidance for the charity sector which provides further information and advice on raising funds, available here: www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-the-charity-sector. Social enterprises such as community interest companies can benefit from all of the measures set out by the Chancellor to benefit small businesses. We are also exploring the possibility of assistance from the additional specific fund recently announced by the Chancellor to support charities and not-for-profit organisations.