CEO of the Institute of Fundraising Peter Lewis has said he is “frustrated and saddened” by Lord Grade’s comments made in The Daily Telegraph ahead of Thursday’s (6th July) launch of the Fundraising Preference Service.
In a piece in The Daily Telegraph yesterday (4th July) which highlighted £25,000 fines for charities that ‘pester donors for cash’, Lord Grade, chairman of the Fundraising Regulator, said that the new system was required because “Too many charities are proving to be laggards’, and failing to change their fundraising practices.
In fact, the Fundraising Regulator itself will not issue fines, with only the Information Commissioner’s Office having the powers to do so.
In a statement given in response to Lord Grade’s comments, IoF chief executive Peter Lewis said:
“Fundraisers are passionate people who work tirelessly to make a difference every day. Charities are there on the frontline when crises strike, providing the safety net when society needs it the most. But they can only do that with the generosity and support of the millions of people who give their time and money to help others.
“That’s why I am deeply frustrated and saddened to again hear Lord Grade talking this morning about the fundraising community in a negative way, misrepresenting how the overwhelming majority of charities communicate with and value their supporters. We know that our members’ relationships with donors is paramount, which is why over the last year charities have supported the set-up of the Regulator and helped to shape the FPS.
“We fully support a strong regulatory system. However, for any non-statutory system to succeed, it is vital that clarity prevails over confusion. Only then can the regulator fully command the trust of both charities and the public. Ahead of Thursday’s launch of the FPS it is essential that the public hear the right information about the service so that the levels of public trust and confidence that Lord Grade wants to see can be achieved.”
Lord Grade was also criticised by others in the fundraising community with many taking to Twitter to voice their views:
Lord Grade has misrepresented my life's work and has insulted 000's of my colleagues he should apologise #proudfundraiser
— Jayne George (@waterglass60) July 4, 2017
The Lord Grade charm offensive on the charity sector continues… https://t.co/myPOPBPVMQ
— Aidan Warner (@ncvoaidan) July 3, 2017
— Joe Jenkins (@MrJoeJenkins) July 4, 2017
However: one person seemed quite pleased:
So pleased I appointed Lord Grade & insisted on a Fundraising Preference Service. It will improve trust in charities. pic.twitter.com/31h1aCb5xG
— Rob Wilson (@RobWilson_RDG) July 3, 2017
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