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Charity leaders unite in letter urging go ahead on lottery law changes

Melanie May | 30 April 2019 | News

More than 70 charity leaders have sent a joint letter to Culture Secretary Jeremy Wright, urging him to press ahead with the proposed changes to charity lottery laws.
In the joint letter, 73 charity leaders, which include the Chief Executives of the British Red Cross, NSPCC, Marine Conservation Society, War Child, and Crisis, outline their support for the Government proposal, first set out last June, to increase the sales limit for charity lotteries to £100 million per year.
In a consultation, ministers said their “preferred option” was to increase the value of tickets each lottery can sell each year from £10 million to £100 million. However, 10 months on and the Government has yet to implement the change. 
In the letter, the charity leaders write:

“The existing £10 million limit is causing excessive bureaucracy, additional administration costs, and in some instances is reducing the funds available to supported charities by significant amounts, which benefits no one.
“As Secretary of State with responsibility for charities we hope you find it useful to know that if you go ahead an introduce a new £100 million annual sales limit you will have the support of a large number of leading charities.
“Doing so would significantly increase the level of funding available to charities like ours to do vital work – something we can all celebrate together.”

Between them, the 73 signatories have received almost £220 million from players of the People’s Postcode Lottery, which has been pressing for the reforms, as have other bodies including the Institute of Fundraising, The Lotteries Council and the Hospice Lotteries Association.
The letter follows a report by research consultancy nfpSynergy, which revealed that thousands of local charities have missed out on £45 million over the past two years due to the current caps.
It found that a lack of available funds meant three trusts which award grants of up to £20,000 to small and local charities across the UK were forced to turn down 3,740 applications worth £44.9 million which would have qualified for awards in 2017 and 2018 – including from projects to help children with mental health and to tackle loneliness among older people.
Clara Govier, Managing Director of People’s Postcode Lottery, said: 

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“This letter shows that virtually the entire charity sector will be cheering from the rooftops if Jeremy Wright bring in ministers’ ‘preferred option’ of a £100 million sales limit.
“The Government has the chance to unlock millions of pounds of extra funding to transform lives in Britain and beyond at no cost to the taxpayer – a win/win that will benefit everyone.”
 

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