Apparently the government in London wants banks to ask people to make a donation to charity when they make a withdrawal of cash. Shops and restaurants could also ask people using a card to make a small donation, perhaps rounding up to the pound, under the proposals. Under legislation expected in the spring, people could be asked to give money when they fill in tax returns, apply for passports, driving licences and other state services (social security?).
So basically they will guilt you into making a charitable donation. And those who are a bit embarrassed about seeming mean will probably make a bigger contribution than they want to. A guy with his girlfriend may be persuaded that she would fancy him a bit more if he was generous rather than mean, whether or not he can afford it.
As so many things at priced at £x.99, people would feel incredibly embarrassed about donating a penny, so they might feel obliged to make it up to the nearest fiver! Do that in 5 shops every Saturday and see how you last till the end of the month.
Hilariously, the spur to encourage bigger donations will be that the donor would be rewarded with a letter from a Minister ....WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And National Lottery winners who contributed a large sum would be publicized on television...!
What? I thought that television channels decided what was publicized, not the government!
Francis Maude, the minister who will launch this idea, which is already operating in Mexico and Colombia, wishes to foster a culture of charitable giving. He wants to change social attitudes that encourage giving, which is strange, because the UK has an excellent record of giving to charity; in fact it is rated 8th most charitable nation in the world with 73% of people giving money a total of £10.6 billion per annum.
(Before we get too big headed, Britons are much less generous at donating their time by volunteering compared with many other countries possibly because we work longer hours than most other people.)
Mr Maude said: “If we can agree as a society the values that underpin helping each other we can unlock huge potential for a stronger, BIGGER society.” He said that he didn’t want to compel people to give, which is very very kind of him. But, you have to wonder, is it the next step?
Ministers apparently have concluded that individuals and businesses need to be reminded of the “warm glow” that results from helping others.
Oh have they?
How come we need to be reminded of that when 73% of the population already gives, and therefore presumably already feels the warm glow? Duh!
I actually checked my calendar when I read the article in the Telegraph. Was it, I wondered, April?
How bloody dare they? Like the majority of Scots I already make my charitable donations to organizations for which I have huge respect; organizations where I know that 100% of what I give will be used to help the target population.
I’d no more entrust my charitable giving to a bank, and thence the government, than I would paint the Scott Monument orange. Imagine entrusting your money to the Royal Bank of Scotland, or Tescos... for them to pass on to George Osborne!!! Yeah right!
They’ve come out with some halfwitted ideas so far; this just has to be the most insulting and ridiculous yet.
Pics: (1) The fabulous Scott Monument in Princes Street in Edinburgh. (2) Chuggers, or Charity Muggers in the street; they pick the vulnerable and won’t let them go till they have a donation. This will end up the same. (3) Francis Maude: If you had a son and the family name was Maude, would you call him a gender ambiguous name? Just a thought! (4) This kind of charity collection is intrusive, but easier to avoid if you don’t have faith in the organization, than being asked for a donation at the point of sale. (5) Maybe it would be better for Francis to encourage us to DO more rather than pay more. There is a far rosier glow from activity and that is where we have a shortfall on other countries.