Services Charities,HMGs reply..

Recieved this in my inbox today,More spin;

Servicecharities - epetition reply26 October 2007

We received a petition asking:

"We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to wavier all MOD charges for charities engaged in assisting serving and former members of the armed forces and their families."

Details of petition:

"Treatment Centres like Tyrwhitt House funded by Combat Stress has facilities that have been specially built to provide for ex servicemen and woman who are physically disabled and suffer from PTSD. Projects like 36, Grays Lane in Ashtead could only come about by donations collected by SSAFA. Charitable organisations engaged in assisting serving and former members of the armed forces and their families, saves the MOD £££, so why should 15% from donations collect during events held on MOD Defence Estate property go back to the HM Treasury? If all donations collected on MOD property were to go direct to the charity's mentioned. The Government and MOD need to start supporting our servicemen and women both serving and Veteran by fully helping service Charitable organisations and to stop putting bureaucratic obstacles in their way. Please sign goal: 1,000,000 signatures."

Read the petition
Petitions home page
Read the Government's responseThank you for taking the time to sign this e-petition. This is an early response from the Prime Minister's Office in advance of the petition's closing date to clarify a few points made within the e-petition itself.

It is not, as stated in this e-petition, the Ministry of Defence's (MoD)(new window) policy to take 15 per cent from donations at charitable events. However, the Government does require the MoD to recover any costs arising for use of the facilities it supplies for non-defence purposes, including those used for charitable fundraising.

Public bodies are encouraged under the Government's Wider Markets Initiative to make better use of their assets by making them available for use by others where appropriate. Where public assets are made available in this way they should be charged for on a commercial basis. Pricing must be fair and in accordance with competition law - so public bodies cannot discriminate between different users (e.g. charging charitable bodies less).

The amount of costs to be recovered vary on a case by case basis. This depends on the facilities provided, and will also include a fee for the use of the venue. The MoD must also charge the organisation the cost of insuring against the risks for which the MoD may be liable in providing the facilities, as well as for any additional utilities, maintenance, contractors fees and administration required to run the event. If the MoD were not to charge for the use of its facilities, this would mean the tax payer subsidising the activities of non-governmental organisations and individuals.

We hope this helps to clarify the reasons for the MoD charging for use of its facilities.

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