The ./guidance on the new solicitation statement for fundraisers required under the new Charities Act is “very good but legally very complicated”, Institute of Fundraising’s director of policy Megan Pacey said.
Speaking at a seminar held by Bates Wells & Braithwaite into the new fundraising statements, Pacey said that the ./guidance was ‘confusing’. Changes from 1 April also mean that it is not just professional fundraisers and commercial participators who have to be aware of the new statements, but also employees and trustees who are acting as collectors. “They are now required to make a statement saying they are a paid member of staff,” said Pacey. “This is not something the sector has grasped.”
She also pointed out that under the new legislation it would be the employee who is liable if the statement is not made, and not the organisation, although the Institute believes it should be the organisation which is liable.
The legislation now insists on fundraisers stating how they are paid and how much for that particular appeal.
Christine Rigby and Rosamund McCarthy of Bates Wells & Braithwaite pointed out potential problems in the new ./guidance in estimating amounts for particular appeals and putting the statement into context. They are also hoping that further examples will be used in the final ./guidance to make it less confusing for fundraisers and easier for them to see how they should be using the new statements.
The consultation on the new ./guidance is open until 31 May and the Office of the Third Sector is hoping to have the final ./guidance out by the summer.
Any comments or suggestions on the ./guidance should be sent to Mubin Jaigirdar, Third Sector Support Team, Office of the Third Sector, Cabinet Office, 35 Great Smith St,London SW1P 3BQ, or email OT******@ca************.uk