More powers, and safeguards, needed for Charity Commission

The parliamentary Committee on the Draft Protection of Charities Bill has published its report into the proposed law, which would give further powers to the Charity Commission. It has backed the proposals but also says that effective safeguards must be in place to ensure charities and their trustees are treated fairly by the Commission.

Read Civil Society News coverage, which includes a further committee concern about the accessibility of Commission advice and guidance online, now that it has been moved to the Gov.uk website.

The committee’s own news item, with links to the report and the evidence submitted, is at http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/joint-select/draft-protection-of-charities-bill/news/committee-publishes-report/. The chair of the committee also discusses the recommendations in a Guardian article ‘If the public is to support charities, they must be well regulated’.

Outside considerations of the draft law, the committee highlights the problems anti-terrorism legislation causes for charities working in conflict zones.

NCVO’s comment on the report is at https://www.ncvo.org.uk/about-us/media-centre/press-releases/816-joint-committee-on-the-draft-protection-of-charities-bill-ncvo-comment, and they also have a helpful summary of what the committee said at http://blogs.ncvo.org.uk/2015/02/25/the-report-of-the-joint-committee-on-the-draft-protection-of-charities-bill-what-you-need-to-know/.

Other views: civil liberties concern from Directory of Social Change (on OneWorld).

The Charity Commission’s news release expressing its delight at the recommendations is at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/commission-welcomes-parliamentary-support-for-new-powers.

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