HC Deb 09 March 1998 vol 308 cc16-7W
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to follow up the recommendations of the Diaxone Commission Report on the future of the voluntary sector; and if there have been changes in the Government's policy on the matters in the report since publication of the Government's response in "Raising the Voltage". [32878]

Mr. Michael

Working with the voluntary sector is a high priority for this Government. We have studied the findings of the Deakin Commission on the Future of the Voluntary Sector in England and consider its Report is a valuable contribution to debate about the relationship between Government and the voluntary and community sector. We agree with many of its conclusions.

We are taking a number of steps to develop this relationship. Our main vehicle for this relationship will be a Compact between Government and the voluntary sector on which we are currently collaborating with principles which should govern the relationship, and progress is being made through a Working Party of Ministers which has also considered progress towards Compact arrangements in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. In the longer term, the Government will monitor the Compact, and relations in general, through a Taskforce of Ministers chaired by my right hon. Friend.