Out with Third Sector, in with Civil Society
Nick Hurd has been appointed as the new Minister for Civil Society at the Cabinet Office, reflecting a shift in language away from the ‘third sector'. The new Minister set out three areas which government policy will focus on, building on an open letter he wrote prior to the election, as Shadow Charities Minister.
A central part of the Conservatives' approach to civil society and to support community action is set out in what they describe as the ‘Big Society'. The ideas draw heavily on thinkers such as Red Tory author, Phillip Blond, and the father of US community organising, Saul Alinsky. The Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister set out the government's plans for the Big Society recently. Nat Wei, a new peer, and founder of the Shaftesbury Partnership, has been given a role as unpaid adviser to oversee the plans. He will be working alongside Nick Hurd MP, Minister for Civil Society and Francis Maude MP, the new Minister for the Cabinet Office.
The new coalition government, the first in the UK for over 60 years, is based on intense negotiations over policy between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. The government has published full details of the coalition agreement between the two parties over their programme of action and policy priorities for the next five years. This follows a briefer outline of the key aspects of the agreement that was published shortly after the coalition was formed. Urban Forum has published a briefing on the initial coalition agreement and we will be publishing a briefing on the full document shortly.
The change in government means a completely new set of Ministers across Whitehall, including a significant number of Liberal Democrat Ministers. A briefing on relevant Ministerial appointments will be available on our website in the next few days. In the meantime, you can find the full details of all appointments, from Secretary of State, to Minister of State and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State here.
The implications of the change in government and of the negotiations between the coalition partners are still emerging, with an emergency Budget planned for 22nd June. Urban Forum will be bringing you briefings and analysis as things become clearer over the next few weeks. Some initial reaction to the results of the general and local government elections can be found on our blog. Current posts include; the collapse of the far right vote, the untold story of the local government elections and some handy tips for community groups on developing relationships with councillors.