Citizens Advice response to Ken Clarke’s announcement on funding for advice services
29 June 2011
Citizens Advice Chief Executive Gillian Guy said:
“As a charity that helps more than two million people every year we welcome the government’s recognition of the vital role advice agencies play in resolving problems that put people’s homes, jobs and livelihoods at risk.
“Ken Clarke deserves real praise for this extra money for free, independent advice services. It will go some way towards ensuring that vulnerable people can continue to get the advice they need.
“However, Citizens Advice remains very concerned about the legal aid bill being debated today. The problem is not just that the cuts are so deep – what’s left of civil legal aid will be inaccessible for too many people and unworkable for too many advice providers.”
“The government has at least listened to the representations that we and others have made about the importance of access to early advice. We look forward to hearing in more detail about the proposals announced by Ken Clarke.”
Last year more than 300 specialist Citizens Advice Bureau case workers – who depend on legal aid - helped solve more than 40,000 welfare benefit cases, almost 60,000 debt cases, over 9,000 housing case and 3,000 employment cases.
Notes to editors
- The Citizens Advice service comprises a network of local bureaux, all of which are independent charities, and national charity Citizens Advice. Together we help people resolve their money, legal and other problems by providing information and advice and by influencing policymakers. For more information in England and Wales see www.citizensadvice.org.uk
- The advice provided by the Citizens Advice service is free, independent, confidential, and impartial, and available to everyone regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality. For online advice and information see www.adviceguide.org.uk
- Citizens Advice Bureaux in England and Wales advised 2.1 million clients on 6.9 million problems from April 2011 to March 2012. For full 2011/2012 service statistics see our quarterly publication Advice trends
- Out of 22 national charities, the Citizens Advice service is ranked by the general public as being the most helpful, approachable, professional, informative, effective / cost effective, reputable and accountable (nfpSynergy’s Brand Attributes survey, May 2010).
- Most Citizens Advice service staff are trained volunteers, working at around 3,500 service outlets across England and Wales.