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Church Criticises 'Moral Failure' of Aid Cuts

Tuesday July 13 2021

The Church of Scotland has described today's decision to cut the UK aid budget as 'a moral failure'.

MPs voted by a majority of 35 to confirm the $4bn cut, a departure from the UK government's commitment to spend 0.7% of GDP on aid, this afternoon.

Lord Wallace, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, said: “I am bitterly disappointed in the outcome of today’s vote on aid spending which will see the continuation of harmful and damaging cuts to some of the world’s poorest people and most fragile communities.

“Cutting the international development budget below the 0.7% target continues to be a breach of the International Development (Official Development Assistance Target) Act 2015.

“It is completely contrary to the manifesto commitments made by all the main political parties – this decision is a moral failure by the UK Government.

“What we choose to spend our money on is a very real sign of our priorities and the cuts that have already been made have had a devastating impact.

“Poorer nations are still struggling against the COVID-19 pandemic and struggling to provide access to basic healthcare, sanitation and vaccinations.

“At this time they need more, not less, support to develop infrastructure, mitigate the impact of the climate crisis and work to overcome violence against women and girls.

“What we choose to spend our money on is a very real sign of our priorities.

“Our commitment to financial aid to help the world’s poorest people and most fragile communities shows our values and priorities - to show love to strangers, even those who have different cultures, languages and religions.

“Through the Church of Scotland’s international partnerships and relations, we know the very real impact that global and sustainable development is having on poverty, education and healthcare.

“I am so thankful to all those MPs who voted today to restore the international aid spending commitment back to the 0.7% target and all those Church members who have written messages, signed petitions, joined protests and prayed."


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