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Election 2015 - "May you live in interesting times"

           

2014 was a challenging year for our sector, but which years haven’t been? Together, though, through a great deal of both individual and collective energy, we have been able to provide the services and work towards the solutions that are so needed.

This year, however, presents a new, probably unprecedented, challenge.

In the past British elections were a binary choice; the new government was either going to be Labour or Conservative. Both sides could be lobbied to try and get them to include in their manifestos commitments that would benefit our sector.

Since 2010 that’s all changed. Going into that election it seemed to be business as usual but after the votes were in it was all up for grabs. The eventual coalition between Conservatives and LibDems led to policy compromises and a new agreement.

This time we have the uncertainly going into the election:

  • Labour and Conservative are playing nip and tuck in the opinion polls, so is it likely that either side can win an outright majority? The Electoral Calculus website suggests that there is a 50% chance of a hung Parliament.  One recent YouGov poll puts each party at 33%. You can test other scenarios with the UK Polling Reports Swing Calculator .
    • Will the SNP, UKIP, Ulster Unionists or the Greens hold the balance of power?
    • Regardless of what’s in each party’s manifesto, what will be the programme of a cobbled together coalition?
    • Not knowing what that programme will be or who will be presenting it how can we hope to influence its content?

There’s said to be an old curse “May you live in interesting times”.

Well, this year is certainly going to be interesting. 

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