Youth charity to write to Huddleston amid concerns his ministerial brief is too wide

The British Youth Council has become the latest charity to raise concerns over the government’s decision to combine the role of charities and youth minister into sports, tourism and heritage.

Baroness Barran had been a dedicated minister for civil society and youth since 2018 but she will not be replaced after moving last month to the Department for Education, during Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s reshuffle.

Instead, sports, tourism and heritage minister Nigel Huddleston is to take over the civil society and youth briefs in addition to his existing roles, which also includes being an assistant government whip.

The government have also closed the Office for Civil Society, which will now form part of the Civil Society and Youth Directorate within the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

The charity has confirmed it will write to Huddleston to call for a dedicated minister for young people and raise concerns over the “size of the brief which will include other responsibilities”.

BYC deputy chair Osaro Otobo said that Huddleston’s “brief has become much bigger again under this new appointment, so we’ll continue to request further reassurances that the size of the brief won’t result in young people’s priorities being ignored”.

“It cannot be right that police relating to young people will be coupled with so many other departmental priorities”, Otobo added.

This week the NCVO raised concerns that “combining civil society with sport, heritage and tourism will mean a full and challenging workload for the minister”.

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