How would it work?
Employees would be entitled to spend up to 10% of their working week away from their jobs, performing voluntary services in the local community.
Employers claim a tax credit against their wage costs (salary & NI).
The voluntary work would need to be approved, but should include: • Youth sports coaching • Reading and numeracy support for younger children in primary schools • Support of elderly people, mental health patients and other vulnerable members of society with social visits, shopping, gardening, transportation and other non-clinical support • Parenting support such as Homestart for young families • Mentoring teens & young adults • Magistracy • Special Constabulary • Education & skills training to prisoners • Environmental work (clearing waterways, restoring woodland) • Cultural enrichment (e.g. music, theatre & art projects)
Cost/Benefit analysis by Stakeholder group
1. Employers. Disadvantage: Higher wage bill by approx. 10%
Advantages: Reduced corporation tax by the equivalent of their higher wage bill. • Additional talent in the business for no additional net cost • Motivated & fulfilled workforce leading to better retention & productivity.
2. Employees. No disadvantages.
Advantages: Better work/life balance • Fulfillment outside work • New skills • Improved social network. 3. Government. Disadvantages: Reduced corporation tax receipts • Administrative burden of the scheme
Advantages: Reduced unemployment benefit due to additional hiring by employers • Higher income tax receipts • Higher consumer spending • Massive resource available to the 3rd sector, especially social and health care and education, with positive patient and student outcomes from a volunteer force • Later retirement age and improved mental health of more fulfilled workforce.