I have to respond. It’s a kneejerk response, but my knee is a mature one.
There is a place in our society for volunteers – a big one – but delivering essential public services is something to be enhanced and supported by volunteers; the suggestion that they should be handed responsibility for actually delivering them is just plain irresponsible.
As a former social worker, my mind boggles at the thought of someone untrained, unlicensed, and possibly without professional qualifications making life-changing decisions about children, vulnerable adults, or the frail elderly. How much more terrifying is the thought that the volunteer’s manager might also be a volunteer?
I am flatly opposed to public services being handed off in this way. We all know, or at least I hope we do, that the government wants to rid its balance sheet of that pesky, major, growing expense of providing social care. How dare the poor stay poor, why aren’t the educated staying educated, when will the elderly stop growing old …?
Our sector leadership continues to buy into this smokescreen for government cuts laughably termed the Big Society. They are not doing the charitable sector and those we serve any favours.Back to Blog