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Macc: What Macc Stands For Statements

23 Oct 2023 - 11:13 by josephine.mcmeeking

In September 2023, Macc launched our first What We Stand For policy statements. These new statements set out our stance on a range of issues that affect our city. However, these are more than just written statements. They are our commitment to sharing what we believe and collaborating with others to challenge the very real social issues facing our city. 

We believe that Manchester is a great city but one that faces challenges such as poverty, homelessness, climate change and ill health. In fact, the impact of some of these issues such as poverty and ill health are felt more in this city than elsewhere in the country. We want to see real change in Manchester and so we are inviting you to join with us to discuss, campaign and take action on these issues. 

Read our statements

Poverty Statement

Anti-Racism Statement

Manchester Voluntary, Community, Social Enterprise Sector Statement

Homelessness Statement

Climate Statement 

Poverty Statement 

In September 2023, we launched our first statement on poverty.

Click here to  hear from Macc Chief Executive on the importance of speaking out and working together against poverty in Manchester. 

Anti-Racism Statement 

On 23 October 2023, Macc launched our second statement on Anti-Racism:

Macc is working to be an anti-racist organisation, to celebrate diversity and to work with others to increase equity across Manchester.    We believe that every individual and community has unique skills, talents, knowledge and insights that are important. Our collective skills, knowledge and lived experience make Manchester’s diversity its greatest strength. Racism exists, it manifests in many different ways and harms people’s lives. Racism has no place in Manchester and is contrary to our values of being supportive, collaborative and influential. Communities experiencing racial inequalities* face structural racism daily in areas such as housing, social security, education, health and employment. Being an anti-racist organisation means we will actively identify and challenge structural and institutional racism publicly, and promote racial equity in Manchester. Whilst equality can mean each person is given the same resources, Macc argues for an equitable redistribution of resources so everyone can reach the same result. We will do everything we can to ensure we are an anti-racist organisation. This includes looking at our own organisational culture including reviewing our policies and processes, and helping Macc staff, volunteers and members to develop their self-awareness and understanding of racism.     Hate crime is a major issue in Manchester - the highest rate of recorded hate crime, across England and Wales, is in the Greater Manchester Police force area. Race is the largest factor in hate crime. We will continue to be involved in campaigns such as Hate Crime Awareness Week and work with other organisations to highlight and challenge discrimination. For us, embracing diversity means championing and reflecting the needs and aspirations of all communities in the city, building shared understanding and increasing community cohesion. We aim to strengthen the voice of all communities and support our sector’s work to ensure no one is left behind.     Macc commits to exposing structural racism and working with others to campaign for equity for all. The more equal a society, the happier, healthier, safer and more successful that society is. This in turn benefits everyone. We are ready to play our full part in a movement to achieve justice for everyone experiencing discrimination, by campaigning for the removal of systemic barriers that are the causes of inequality. We want to work towards a city where everyone can flourish, free from racism and hate.

Manchester Voluntary, Community, Social Enterprise Sector Statement 

The voluntary, community and social enterprise sector (VCSE sector) exists all across Manchester and we are part of the fabric of the city. Manchester wouldn’t be the same without us.      There are almost 4,000 charities, community groups, faith organisations doing community work, not-for-profit and social enterprise organisations across the city. The VCSE sector is local people getting together to do useful things that make a difference in our communities. It is not about old-fashioned ideas of ‘charity’ but active citizens providing mutual support in organisations that are governed by and accountable to local communities. We make Manchester a better place to live, study, work and do business. The VCSE sector contributes to the economy and works to reduce inequalities. The VCSE sector is, collectively, a powerful force for positive change: in both practical action and in influencing decisions and policymaking.    The beauty of the VCSE sector is in its diversity. The scale, complexity, experience and wealth of talent forms a huge ecosystem. We often hear challenge from people outside the sector to rationalise and tidy it up. We think that is fundamentally wrong: you don’t look at a beautiful garden and decide it would be better if it was just one big flower. The VCSE sector is irreplaceable and represents the diversity of our city.     Like volunteering, the VCSE sector is not a cost-free resource. Local VCSE organisations have a lot in common with local businesses with challenges around running costs, workforce recruitment, and staff and volunteer wellbeing. Unlike businesses, the full effect of what the sector does cannot be monetised. Macc advocates for resources for the VCSE sector that fully reflect what our work costs. Recent years have seen the sector becoming overwhelmed with demand – this is taking its toll on organisations, workers (paid and voluntary), on leadership and on resources.    Macc often challenges the idea that some people are ‘hard to reach’ - it’s more true to say that some institutions find it hard to go to where people are. The VCSE sector is communities organising themselves so it's a great place to engage and collaborate but that must be recognised as requiring resources, not there to be exploited. These resources should be allocated equitably across the city.    Equally, Macc is a critical friend of the VCSE sector. We believe that the sector should model the future: as inclusive and fair employers, as purchasers of goods and services, as campaigners, and as providers of services. We share learning and, if needed, challenge poor practice - as well as celebrating the impact and achievements of our amazing VCSE colleagues in this city.   Macc’s goal is to make it as easy as possible for VCSE organisations and local people to make their best contribution to life in Manchester.


HOMELESSNESS All forms of homelessness can be prevented. Macc will continue to listen, lobby and collaborate with those with lived and learned experience of homelessness. Collectively we can, and will, end homelessness.  We believe that every person has the right to a safe and secure home. However, there are too many people in Manchester living in unsuitable and expensive temporary accommodation for too long with no prospect of a permanent home or sofa surfing, living in homeless shelters and living on our streets. Macc believes that this needs to change. Experiencing any kind of homelessness can lead to increased stress, exacerbate mental health concerns, and lead to relationship breakdown, with people losing jobs and a steady income, in need of primary healthcare support and less access to healthy food. The Government has failed to provide funding to build adequate social housing, resulting in people with no access to affordable, long-term homes. The impact of this has been a massive increase in the use of expensive and private rented accommodation with Manchester now being one of the most expensive cities in the UK to rent in. This exacerbates the problem and means people are kept in a cycle of homelessness, whether they are living in temporary accommodation, hostel accommodation or rough sleeping. Manchester City Council has a house building programme but even more affordable housing is needed along with more suitable temporary accommodation.  We believe that tackling homelessness is essential to helping people out of poverty and one way is to work with landlords to ensure people are provided with good quality accommodation at a reasonable rate. Macc supports initiatives such as the development of a Greater Manchester Good Landlord Charter to bring about safe and affordable housing for all. Our current system does not hold landlords accountable. The most vulnerable people in Manchester are at higher risk of being forced out of their homes with immediate effect e.g. those with No Recourse to Public Funds, people experiencing mental health concerns and people out of work. We believe that prevention is part of the solution. Manchester’s voluntary, community and social enterprise sector has taken steps to identify key preventative methods. The Manchester Homelessness Partnership is a collective made up of people with lived and learned experience of homelessness. Their work includes mapping prevention systems, services and initiatives across the city, and Macc will support this collective to identify prevention gaps and lobby for policy change. Macc is committed to work in collaboration with anyone looking to tackle the key causes of homelessness. Macc stands with those organisations supporting people experiencing homelessness to not only prevent homelessness but address the real every day needs of people experiencing homelessness in Manchester and reducing the stigma around experiencing homelessness. Working together will enable us to share power with people who use homelessness services, enabling all parties to have an equal say in design and decision-making. Collectively, we will move towards a Manchester where no one is made homeless.  Macc is part of the Manchester Homelessness Partnership. You can find out more about this partnership and other ways to contribute to the collective work to end homelessness in Manchester via the MHP website.


Climate. Macc is committed to addressing the urgent climate crisis, taking meaningful and practical action towards a sustainable future. According to the latest reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), human activities, principally through emissions of greenhouse gases, have undeniably caused global warming (IPCC, 2023). This crisis is already leading to widespread adversity and suffering, while simultaneously affecting human health and wellbeing in increasingly unpredictable ways. Failure to take action today will impose significantly higher costs on future generations compared to the material efforts required to address the issue now. It is a local, national and global emergency that affects us all.    We understand, that the gravity and magnitude of the climate crisis demands immediate action, posing an imminent threat to our ecosystems, economies and the overall societal welfare. Rising temperatures, intensified extreme weather patterns, increased air pollution and the associated strain on critical infrastructure, alongside growing numbers of environmental refugees, are just a few of the myriad challenges we face as a society. These repercussions will unquestionably reverberate through Manchester's communities, profoundly affecting the lives and livelihoods of all residents.   Our Climate Action Strategy is centred on three key areas that enable us to drive change:   Individuals: We aim to foster a culture of awareness and create a safe space for open dialogue among our staff, where difficult environmental topics can be discussed. Our objective is to empower and inspire our employees to make changes in their own lives. To ensure we do this, Macc has formed a climate action sub-group, where our staff members meet to share learnings from our environmental journey.   Internal practices: We are committed to continuously improving our environmental performance by integrating responsible practices and policies into our operations, minimising our carbon footprint and setting an example for others. Macc has recently joined the Become Green Together Programme, which is a training scheme in environmental sustainability for the voluntary and community organisations.   External partnerships: MACC strongly believes that everyone can contribute to local climate action, regardless of their mission. Through collaboration, we strive to play our part in mitigating the impacts of climate change and championing a thriving, healthy, green and socially just Manchester. While individual activism has its place, we believe that collective action is necessary to address this crisis comprehensively. To encourage this, we have partnered with 10GM to convene and facilitate a climate action learning space for VCSE leaders.    Macc stands firmly in support of climate action, fully acknowledging the substantial challenges posed by the human-caused climate crisis and the need for collective efforts to understand, mitigate and adapt to its effects. Acknowledging that climate jargon can hinder engagement, our aim is to cultivate a sense of urgency and evoke inspiration in individuals, communities and policymakers alike, to prompt decisive action and uphold commitments. By leveraging our collective power, we have the ability to drive transformative change and forge a secure, sustainable and resilient future for all.

Find out more on our website: GMVCSE Accord, Macc State of the Sector, explore our impact stories, explore our directory

Or take action: Support the Spirit of Manchester Fund and volunteer via Volunteer Centre Manchester


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