Decriminalisation of TV licence fee evasion: "No compelling basis for change"
DCMS has launched a new consultation on whether to decriminalise TV licence fee evasion—revisiting a question to which an independent, Government-commissioned review delivered a definitive, thorough "no" verdict in 2015.
The Perry Review concluded there was "no compelling basis for change" because decriminalisation would be inefficient, impair BBC income by leading to higher evasion and collection costs, and probably have a more damaging impact on low-income households.
Support for decriminalisation seems less the result of a serious concern for low-income households than a desire to reduce BBC funding or move to a subscription-funded BBC. Other policies would better redistribute the burden of BBC funding while keeping it a truly public broadcaster.