Third Sector: Coronavirus

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 23rd October 2020.

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Photo of Yasmin Qureshi Yasmin Qureshi Shadow Minister (International Development)

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he has taken to support the voluntary and community sector during the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of John Whittingdale John Whittingdale Minister of State

There are generous measures available for the whole voluntary and community sector which include more than £1.3 billion a year in respect of Gift Aid on donations. Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the government has made available a support package to all charities and businesses, including deferring their VAT bills, paying no business rates for their shops next year, and furloughing staff where possible.

The Government has also provided targeted financial support to the sector during the Covid-19 outbreak, including an unprecedented £750 million in funding for the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector, which includes £360 million directly from Government departments and £200 million via the National Lottery Community Fund.

Additionally, the Office for Civil Society in DCMS has issued regular newsletters to ensure the civil society sector is up to date on the latest information and support available during the Covid-19 pandemic.

DCMS continues to work closely with the civil society sector to assess the needs of the sector and how the government can best support it to continue its vital work. The Minister for Civil Society, Baroness Barran holds regular meetings with civil society representatives to highlight and address key issues for the sector in responding to the Covid-19 crisis.

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