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Charity Update - 28 April 2021

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United Kingdom

Welcome to the latest issue of Fieldfisher's Charity Update.  

This issue contains the all too familiar mix of promising signs and worsening situations as charities continue to work for the public good in the challenging conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Charities registered or active in Northern Ireland should look at the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland's response to a recent successful challenge to its decision-making processes and also the review of charity regulation in Northern Ireland. Note also the new guidance issued on fundraising, which will be welcome as charities prepare for a return to normality.

Neil Palmer

21 April 2021

Social sector leaders release a joint statement on the right to campaign

In response to criticisms by some MPs, charity leaders have issued a joint statement explaining that changes charities are asking for to tackle race inequality are not “worthless” or “weird” but focused on solving some of this country’s most enduring challenges.

ACEVO

20 April 2021

Latest 'Respond, recover and reset: the voluntary sector and COVID-19' survey is published

New research shows 'promising signs of improvement' in the relationships between local authorities and charities. However, the research appears to show that larger charities have a better experience of this.

NCVO, Nottingham Trent University & Sheffield Hallam University

20 April 2021

Charity Commission confirms registration of the LGB Alliance after much consideration

LGB Alliance applied to register as a charity in March 2020. Its purposes are to promote equality and diversity and human rights. The Commission received a number of objections to its registration, it considered these as part of its decision.

Charity Commission

19 April 2021

New guidance published to support the return of in-person events and community fundraising

Two more pieces of guidance support charities as they plan their return to in-person events and community fundraising: covering events and community fundraising activities and cash collections. The guidance is in line with the Code of Fundraising Practice and the Government guidelines in each UK nation.

Fundraising Regulator and Chartered Institute of Fundraising

18 April 2021

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland issues important guidance on its decision-making procedures

In February 2020, the Court of Appeal delivered its judgement in the case McKee & Others v Charity Commission for Northern Ireland. The judgement upheld a legal challenge to the delegation of decision-making powers by the Commission to members of staff. The Commission have published FAQs on the judgement here.

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland

15 April 2021

Charity Commission CEO gives evidence to the Public Accounts Committee of "worsening financial resilience in the charity sector"

Helen Stephenson CBE, Chief Executive Officer, Charity Commission spoke to MPs to explain the position of the charitable sector: “What we are seeing is instances of worsening financial resilience.” She explained that whilst presently, there have not been lots of charities dropping off the register, that was likely to be a step that would be seen later on. Also that the numbers of charities with incomes of more than £500,000, which had either negative or no free reserves had increased from 9% in April 2020, to 28% in March 2021.

Parliament Live

14 April 2021

Independent review commissioned into the charity regulation of Northern Ireland

The Minister for Communities has commissioned an Independent Review of Charity Regulation in Northern Ireland. The review will consider the Charities Act (Northern Ireland) 2008 and the roles of the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland and the Department for Communities. It will examine whether the legislation and operation of the Commission within the existing legal framework strikes the right balance.

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland

13 April 2021

Charity Commission urges donors to give safely to registered charities this Ramadan

The Muslim Charities Forum estimate that in previous years UK donors have given over £130 million to charity during the month of Ramadan. It is a time of great generosity, and with the rise in online donations the Commission wants to remind donors of how to give safely.

Charity Commission

12 April 2021

Updated guidance issued to help charities resume their fundraising activities

Following on from the Government announcement that charities can resume public fundraising in England from 12 April, guidance has been updated on the key principles of fund-raising and public fundraising.

Fundraising Regulator and Chartered Institute of Fundraising

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