Ukip’s policies are not anti-charity

I’ve just been elected for the UK Independence Party as a member of the European Parliament. I’ve done voluntary and charitable work for a number of years, from setting up a charity working with disadvantaged young people to hospital radio broadcasting which I’ve done since I was 15.

I’ve fundraised for charities, worked on both a voluntary and paid basis delivering council holiday sports schemes for children and young people. I donate to several charities. My wife and I sponsor children in the developing world. 

So when Labour’s Paul Brannen writes “Why is the sector keeping quiet on Ukip?” I’m bemused. Perhaps I’m supposed to oppose myself. Brannen claims flat tax, overseas aid and climate change as reasons for the third sector to oppose Ukip.

Ukip’s support for a flat tax (which is in any case under review) included a tax threshold helping the poorest by taking anyone working on minimum wage for a standard working week out of taxation altogether. It helps to close tax loopholes, ensuring the very rich can’t avoid their obligations.

Ukip believes overseas aid should be reserved for genuine emergencies.  Money shouldn’t prop up despotic regimes. Mismanaged aid can create reliance and becomes counterproductive. The solution lies in bringing down trade barriers (remember Oxfam has repeatedly criticised the EU for its “double standards”) and providing a genuine helping hand.

Unilateral action on climate change has pushed energy prices up, could lead to power blackouts as early as next year and leaves millions (mainly pensioners) in fuel poverty, choosing between heating and eating.  Meanwhile, every year China’s emissions increase by more than the entire UK output.

Paul Brannen has spent years working for Christian Aid. They do much good work but I wonder how representative it is. Their chief executive earned over £126,000 last year; rather a different world to what most third sector workers recognise. They receive tens of millions of pounds of taxpayer funding, and EU funding – from our taxes, with strings attached – including the expectation that the EU will be praised. No wonder he’s attacking Ukip.

We’ve both recently been elected as MEPs for North East England and demonstrated commitment to the third sector, him in a paid management role and me working at grassroots level. We should put political differences aside to support charity, but sadly Paul Brannen uses his position to try to turn the third sector against anyone of my affiliation.

Jonathan Arnott is the newly-elected Ukip MEP for the North East

  • John Plummer

    I’ve also given up alcohol for January. It’s so easy I’m bored of it. And I don’t feel any better.

  • Julia Dawson

    Definitely dry and delightful! I am heading straight to the sponsoring JustGiving page.

  • Ross Robinson

    The other parties have been very derogative about UKIP and its members just because they can see that the normal people of this Country are disgusted with the way that this Government Of Liars, do not care about its hard working citizens. But would rather spend £50 million a day supporting the life style of there rich friends in Brussels and giving millions away to countries that don’t need it or fund there lifestyles and there people don’t see any of it. The labour can’t be trusted anymore than the Conservatives can they Tell lies hand over fist to get you to vote for them and when they get elected they do exactly the same thing and stick two fingers up to the voters and say we know what’s best for the country so you lot can just suffer as you can’t do anything about it now. It always makes me wonder what sort of person will keep voting into power a party or parties that have been Proved to be complete Liars & may I add jail birds in some cases and yet they think because we vote for UKIP a party which speaks out what most of the voters are thinking, we are all Racist or homophobic or want to stop annual holiday pay and maternity leave etc etc. Rubbish, who are these people listening to or have they all been Brainwashed or Lobotomised by the Tories and Labour party who are now realising that the people have had enough of there constant lie’s and decept

    • sayajp

      good sentiments but my god, what appalling English & spelling.

  • LesGeo

    Hmm. The North East, eh? Is that the region where Labour used a fraudulent letter to create fictitious UKIP policies?
    Is that the region where Labour put leaflets through doors claiming that UKIP planned to end workers’ holidays and privatise the NHS amongst other 24 carat lies?
    If you get a chance to see Jonathan’s acceptance speech in Sunderland – it is PURE magic! The Labour supporters did not know where to put themselves. (He also thanked his other opponents for their integrity – but did not make those thanks to Labour!)

  • scotspete

    my charity cott campbells ozone therapy trust machines now helping many of my friends and neaghbours , but still awaiting oscr status ….is it because iam ukip supporter ? my friend george bying uses my bobbeck magnetic pulsator he iis 78 yrs old and scottish wieght lifting champion ? and my close german friend wolf gang has used my http://www.edskilling.com photo genie fighting his throat cancer ? hoping our new IRH elderly care home will our first http://www.electro medicine clinic , and my wife betty now responding to my bobbeck brain tuner for her dementia , sadly to late for barbara my only daughter who died in 2010 , buthchered by our NHS PRODOCOL OF POISON SHE HAD BREAST CANCER? JOIN MY WORLD PEITITION TO STOP THIS MASS MURDER VOTE UKIP FOR BETTER HEALTH ?

  • Lesley

    Firstly, climate change is more likely to start with cosmic rays coming to earth from exploding supernovas and collisions of remnants of stars with nebula in space. Many of these cosmic rays are shielded from striking the earth by the electromagnetic activity of the sun. When the sun is active, the solar wind prevents cosmic rays from entering the earth’s atmosphere by sweeping them around the earth. When the sun is inactive, more of them penetrate the atmosphere. Upon reaching the lower atmosphere where more sulphur dioxide, water vapor, and ozone is present, the cosmic rays ionize the air, releasing electrons that aid in the formation of more CCN and form more dense clouds. This increase in low-cloud amount reflects more solar energy to space, cooling the planet. Variations in electromagnetic activity of the sun and fluctuations in cosmic ray intensity from space result in the periodic warming and cooling of the earth.

    Solar-modulated cosmic ray processes successfully explain the recent global warming episode. It would be prudent for the political leadership in the UK. and the rest of the world to look more closely at Svensmark’s theory of cosmoclimatology for an explanation of global warming before restructuring our entire economic system to eliminate carbon dioxide. If, in fact, Svensmark is correct, reducing the concentration of carbon dioxide will have little impact, anyway…. consequently the so called Green Taxes are just another form of Government Taxes. Secondly charity begins at home……. we should ensure any aid is given to our own citizens before being sent abroad …. as, has been said, most of the money sent does not reach the people in need anyway

  • MarkR

    Well, if the article itself hadn’t been enough to confirm that Ukip’s values are antithetical to that of the sector and the wider issues of social support, equality, internationalism and environmentalism we embody, the comments from their supporters certainly do the job.

    Thank you Third Sector for publishing this – it’s better to get things from the horse’s mouth rather than hearsay or attacks from their political opponents.

    • Peter Colllins

      Couldn’t agree more.

  • Elizabeth Balgobin

    Congratulations on your election to the European Parliament. Perhaps the discussion would be more productive if we understood what you will be doing in your paid job as a European Parliamentarian to support the UK not for profit sector, particularly the hard hit groups in the North East?