PM makes Nicky Morgan the new member of cabinet responsible for charities 

25 Jul 2019 News

Nicky Morgan, culture secretary

Nicky Morgan has been appointed as the secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport, after Jeremy Wright was sacked by Boris Johnson.  

Morgan has been an MP since 2010 and has some experience of charities, having held responsibility for charity tax policy as economic secretary to the Treasury in 2013. She was education secretary between 2014 and 2016. 

Since 2017 she has been chair of the Treasury Select Committee. She has mentioned “charity” 35 times in Parliament, mostly to praise organisations' work or when responding to questions as a minister.

Morgan tweeted that it is a privilege to take on the role. 

 

 

The Office for Civil Society is part of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and the civil society brief is normally held by a junior minister who reports to the culture secretary. 

Charities minister?

At the moment Mims Davies is minister for sport and civil society, with a portfolio that includes gambling, horse racing, youth policy, the National Lottery and society lotteries, and co-ordinating cross-government work on loneliness. 

No announcement has yet been made about her or any other junior ministers. 

Normally the prime minister will announce which junior ministers have been allocated to each department and it is then up to the secretary of state to determine what portfolio each of them will hold, which means it can be a number of days before it is clear who the minister for civil society is. 

Tracey Crouch, the former minister for civil society who resigned in protest at plans to delay reforms to regulation of fixed-odds betting terminals, had been widely tipped for the culture secretary role. But according to Harry Cole, deputy political editor for the Mail on Sunday, she asked not to be considered for government role.

She later tweeted that she was looking forward to spending the summer with her young son. 

New development secretary

Johnson, who became prime minister yesterday, made new appointments for many of the key posts in cabinet yesterday evening. He sacked a number of political opponents, while others resigned. 

Rory Stewart, who was international development secretary, was one of those who quit. Stewart had stood against Johnson for the leadership and said he would not serve in a Johnson cabinet. 

Alok Sharma was appointed as secretary of state for international development yesterday. He was previously employment minister in the Department for Work and Pensions. He was elected MP for Reading West in 2010, having previously been a chartered accountant.

Exchequer Secretary promoted 

Robert Jenrick has been promoted to secretary of state for housing, communities and local government, taking over from James Brokenshire who was sacked yesterday. 

Jenrick had been exchequer secretary to the Treasury since 2018, with responsibility for charity tax policy. In that role he had repeatedly called on individual charities to be more transparent about how much Gift Aid they receive. 

The communities secretary is also an important role to the sector as many charities rely on funding from local authorities and are affected by policy changes at local government level. 

Debate on Shared Prosperity Fund

Today the Office for the Leader of the House of Commons, now Jacob Rees-Mogg, announced that a debate on the future of a Shared Prosperity Fund would take place on 5 September, when Parliament returns from summer recess. 

Charities have long been urging the government to clarify what is happening about the Shared Prosperity Fund, which is expected to be the replacement for EU Social Funding. 

A consultation was supposed to begin at the beginning of this year and there is widespread concern in the sector that the new funding will be delivered by Local Enterprise Partnerships, which historically have not engaged well with the charity sector. 

For more news, interviews, opinion and analysis about charities and the voluntary sector sign up to receive the Civil Society News daily bulletin here
 

 

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