Irvin challenges Labour to come up with Big Society alternative

Written by Andrew Holt

Joe Irvin, NAVCA’s chief executive, has challenged the Labour Party to provide a viable alternative to the Big Society.

Joe Irvin made the challenge during a fringe meeting jointly hosted by NAVCA and the think-tank ResPublica at the Labour Party Conference in Manchester.

Irvin said: “Labour in Government had a good relationship with voluntary groups. When the Conservative Party came up with the Big Society it put Labour on the back foot. The task for Labour is to work out how it will respond to this.

"Labour has yet to come up with a viable alternative but it has to come up with policies that appreciate and the value of what communities bring and nurtures voluntary action.

“Ed Miliband’s thinking on pre-distribution, achieving greater equality before tax and benefits, could be the way back in for Labour. Voluntary organisations are a vital part of this thinking because it tackles inequality through early intervention and helps people to come together to challenge powerful economic interests.”

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