Final stages for new charities legislation

The Charities (Protection and Social Investment) Bill had its House of Commons Report Stage, Legislative Grand Committee and Third Reading all together on Tuesday, 26th January. The legislation was confirmed as relating exclusively to England and Wales, so the ‘English votes for English laws’ procedure applies to it.

The shadow (Labour Party) minister for civil society re-tabled a number of amendments at this stage, including introducing a Charity Tribunal appeal mechanism against the new Charity Commission official warning powers.

Other proposed new clauses, requiring the Commission to hold annual hearings on fundraising regulation and the workings of charities, were put forward by the chair of the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee. The committee had published its report on charity fundraising the day before.

None of these amendments were passed. See Civil Society News for further coverage, or the official parliamentary record via the Bill’s stage links.

The final stage before Royal Assent is ‘Ping Pong’, when the House of Lords gets a chance to consider the remaining amendments introduced (by the government) in the Commons. This is down for 2nd February. It is unlikely that there will be any substantive changes.

Sector concerns

This article from Directory of Social Change, published shortly before the 3rd reading stage, gives a good overview of the concerns that the sector has over the legislation.

Further reading

The last VoluntaryNews piece on the Charities Bill.