Caerphilly MP Wayne David’s Blog: June 11
The Importance of Volunteers at the CAB
The other day, I went to a Volunteers Event at Bargoed Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB). As well as a dozen or so volunteers, the new leader of the council, Harry Andrews, and Jeff Cuthbert AM were there. Together we all praised the CAB in Bargoed and other CABs throughout the Caerphilly County Borough.
In congratulating and praising the volunteers, I made the following point. Just a few weeks ago, Parliament passed a piece of legislation which will unfortunately significantly reduce the level of Legal Aid available to individuals and the Citizens Advice Bureau. This Central Government ‘cut’ will have a hugely negative impact on the ability of CABs to help those individuals who need advice and support.
This ‘cut’ will occur at a time when the impact of Government cuts on social welfare benefits will be really starting to have an effect. At the moment, only some 30% of Government cuts have been implemented; the rest are in the pipe-line.
In this context, I made the point that it is absolutely vital that CAB volunteers are encouraged and supported as much as possible. These volunteers will be at the sharp-end of helping less well-off people who are facing the brunt of Government cuts.
In my own office and at my advice surgeries, I am now seeing an increase in the number of people who are being directly affected by the Government’s ‘austerity’ programme. But, we are under no misapprehension; the offices of the MP and AM can only help a small minority of those people who need assistance. There can be no doubt that the CAB and its vital volunteers are needed now more than ever before.
Labour MP for Caerphilly
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