What is a Citizens Advice Bureau?

What is a CAB?

What do they do?

Aims and Principles

Equal Opportunities


What is a Citizens Advice Bureau?

You've probably heard the name, but do you know what they are or what they do, if you don't then read on.

A CAB is one of over 700 independent advice centres that are members of the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux (NACAB). In order to belong to the National Association each bureau must meet specified quality standards and work within the Aims and Principles of the service.

The service dates from 1939 when they were set up to help people cope with the disruption that was expected from the impending conflict.

The service that is now offered is very different from that which was originally available.

As a service that is mainly delivered by volunteers, it reacts to the demands of its users and draws on the experience of its workers. Hence this service that has been designed and will be delivered by Lesbians, Gay men and Bisexuals for our own communities.

What Does a Citizens Advice Bureau Do?

There is probably no definite answer to this question, with over 700 bureaux delivering services from nearly 1000 outlets, each responding to the needs of local communities, each with different resources. Here is a list of some of the things CABx do.

These are but a few of the things a CAB may do, I can't give a list of what a CAB cannot do as, with nearly a thousand outlets, one is probably doing it. If you need to find out what your local CAB can do then give them a call; their details are in the phone book.

Aims and Principles

All CABx work to these aims and principles.

Aims of the Service

Advice and assistance is given regardless of the interests of funders or other parties that may wish to exert an influence on the advice and information given.
Information that could identify that an individual has sought advice or the nature of that advice will not be disclosed without the prior authority from that person.
Advice and help will be given on any subject without any preconceived attitude on the part of the service.
All advice is given without charge to the user.