Government launches consultation on civil society strategy

Interested parties have twelve weeks to comment on the document, published today by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has launched a consultation on its much-anticipated civil society strategy.

The consultation, which was published today, is seeking views from the sector and beyond over the next 12 weeks on how the government can help to strengthen the charity sector.

The government announced last year that it would develop a civil society strategy, which it said would help to shape the English charity sector’s future direction.

The consultation will focus on four key areas: supporting people to help build a stronger society, helping the private and public sectors to support social good, building stronger public services and improving communities.

In a video message accompanying the consultation launch, Tracey Crouch, the Minister for Civil Society, said that the charity sector had changed a lot in recent years and she wanted an "open conversation", exploring "bold ideas" about how to strengthen civil society and evaluate the sector’s strengths and weaknesses.

"We know that civil society has a fantastic ability to bring people across our communities together in a way that government often cannot," Crouch said.

"That’s why we want to build on our strong foundations and shared mission with civil society. We want to build a deep sense of trust and ambition between people, organisations and sectors that will allow us to find new and creative ways to respond to the challenges we face together."

But she recognised that, though the government wanted to hear ambitious ideas for reform, "at the same time we must be realistic about the financial and legislative pressures facing us".

The DCMS will hold events across England to allow people to discuss civil society, and the strategy will be developed with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, and other government departments.

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