DE Budget Meeting - Key Asks
The complete eradication of the community relations budget is completely out of line with reductions across the rest of the Department, it also runs contrary to recent outcome of inspectorate on delivery of CRED in schools and the Programme for Government priority to “building a strong shared society.”
No rationale given for higher reduction, of around 20% being passed to the youth service budget compared to other parts of DE, especially when organisation such as Youth Action take £1 of funding to generate £11.60 worth of investment therefore a 20% of cut to funding becomes a lot higher when this is scaled up. Therefore even what is seen as a ‘small reduction’ in funding to community and voluntary organisations results in programmes closing and front line services being lost to their service users.
No discussion with other Departments in relation to their reduction in funding leads to children being doubly hit for example through cuts to both early years and sure start.
No EQIAs have been carried out on the draft budget as yet, and the high level screening has only shown up “minor impacts” despite the clear effects reductions in education spending will have on young people.