Charities Under Scrutiny for “aggressive tactics”

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Photo credit: Chris Bignall / Alamy

New charity watchdog introduces tough  rules for charities.

Currently in UK charities monitor themselves, a system which the The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) believe is failing.

The government commissioned review, led by NCVO will ban charities from fundraising techniques such as cold calling and mail shots.

This is in light of recent scandals and claims of charities target the elderly and vulnerable.

The review was influenced by the death of Olive Cooke, 92, who was one of Britain’s oldest poppy sellers who took her own life.

Before her death Cooke received up to 267 letters a month from charities asking for money.

This incident drew concerns over intrusive fundraising.

The report published on Wednesday, recommends that the main regulator, the Fundraising Regulation Standards Board (FRSB), be shut down and replaced a single, new fundraising regulator which will report regularly to parliament.

The service would act as a “reset button” for those who are unhappy with the number of charities contacting them.

The public would be able to opt out of charities sending them fundraising requests or making phone calls.

Charities registered with the new regulator would be permitted to use a kitemark to demonstrate to the public that they adhere to the rules.

Charities which seriously or persistently breach the rules would be named and shamed and could be forced to halt their fundraising until problems are resolved.

The Chief Executive of the review Sir Stuart Etherington said:

“Britain is a tremendously generous country, and people have enormous goodwill for charities. But charities must not take that for granted.”

“This has been a clear wake-up call and now is the time to tighten the standards.”

“The current system of self-regulation has quite clearly failed to prevent serious breaches of trust and widespread dissatisfaction.”

“I am confident that charities understand the pressing need to restore confidence in fundraising and will back these proposals.”

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