The 2024 General Election: Implications for the VCSFE Sector

The announcement of the General Election scheduled for July 4, 2024, by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, represents a pivotal moment for the Voluntary, Community, Social and Faith Enterprises (VCSFE) sector. This election is not just a political contest; it’s a determinant of the future landscape in which our sector operates.

The Political Context

The election comes at a time when the UK is navigating post-pandemic recovery and facing economic challenges. The Conservative government has been at the helm during this period, and their policies have significantly impacted the VCSFE sector. With the polls suggesting a potential shift in power to the Labour Party, we must prepare for changes that could reshape our operating environment.

Campaigning with Confidence

The Charity Commission has urged leaders to “campaign with confidence” while ensuring that they do not promote a political party or candidate. This guidance is crucial as we advocate for the issues close to our cause. Our role is to elevate the voices of those we serve and ensure that their needs are addressed by the incoming government.

Potential Changes and Challenges

A change in government could bring about shifts in policy that directly affect our sector. The Labour Party’s cautious stance on areas like crypto regulation suggests a broader approach of careful consideration and potentially more stringent oversight. This could translate into more regulated funding streams and a greater emphasis on accountability and transparency for charities and social enterprises.

Opportunities for Collaboration

Regardless of the election outcome, there will be opportunities for the VCSFE sector to collaborate with the government. Our expertise in community engagement, social action, and service provision positions us as valuable partners in shaping an inclusive and equitable society. The next government must recognise the value that partnering with our sector brings.

Existing Policies and Contracts

The Voluntary, Community, Social and Faith Enterprises (VCSFE) sector is deeply intertwined with public policies and contracts. The current government’s approach, as outlined in the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012, has been to encourage VCSE procurement and participation in public service markets. This includes the abolition of pre-qualification questionnaires for low-value public sector contracts, which has been a significant step in reducing barriers for VCSE organisations. 

However, with existing contracts set to expire, and the proposals for future commissioning emphasising market stability and service continuity, a change in government could lead to a reevaluation of these contracts. The potential shift in power might bring new priorities and criteria for public service contracts, directly affecting the VCSFE sector’s operations and funding.

Impact on Funding Opportunities

A general election can significantly influence funding opportunities for charities. The election period often leads to delays in decision-making for contract tendering processes and can affect organisational finances. Moreover, the outcome of the election could result in changes to public policy or legislative frameworks, which might either open up new funding avenues or lead to cuts in existing ones.

Contact Us
If you have any pressing questions regarding how the General Election will affect your organisation, please contact us and we will endeavour to help.

Practical Ways to Leverage the Election Period

Charities can take advantage of the election period in several ways:


Raise Political Profile: Use the election as an opportunity to raise the political profile of your causes. Engage in debates and ensure your messaging resonates with the electorate and policymakers.

Campaign with Confidence: Familiarise yourself with the rules set by the Charity Commission and Electoral Commission to campaign effectively within legal boundaries. This will help maintain public trust while advocating for your cause.

Engage with Legislation: Keep an eye on the ‘wash-up’ period, where legislation can be passed quickly, and engage with politicians to influence the outcome of bills that impact your sector.

Build Relationships: Plan for post-election engagement. Research likely new MPs and strategise on building relationships with them, as well as with the new government, to ensure your sector’s voice is heard.

Promote Respect and Tolerance: Engage in public discourse in a way that promotes respect, tolerance, and consideration for others, reflecting the trusted standing of your charity.


By preparing for these potential changes and actively engaging during the election period, charities can not only navigate the uncertainties but also capitalise on the opportunities to further their causes and enhance their impact.

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Published: May 23, 2024