Wednesday, 4 December 2013


Shock, horror: Charity Commission a dud – and that's official

The charitable (voluntary) sector has played a leading role in developing Conductive Education in England and Wales*, where charities are regulated by the Charity Commission. Some year ago, the Commission, once a revered and respected national institution, was restructured by the Government to suit present-day ways of doing things.

The national Audit Office has been examining the Commission's effectiveness. Today its report is published. Here is how its findings look to Third Sector, the of the charity industry's trade paper  
A damning report by the government's spending watchdog raises serious concerns about the regulator's effectiveness in dealing with regulatory cases and abuse of charitable status... the regulator does not do enough to deal with abuse of charitable status, fails to take tough enough action where there are serious regulatory cases involving charities and can be slow to act when investigating regulatory concerns...  the commission is not meeting its statutory objective of increasing public trust and confidence in charities and is not delivering value for money...  too passive in pursuing its objective of protecting the good name of the charity sector and in making the case for the resources needed to allow it to do so....etc., etc.
What now?

Perhaps we can hope for a blitz on dodgy charities and closer scrutiny of trustees, and expect more bureaucratic intrusion all round and a cry for yet more money to be poured into the Commission.

For the moment it looks yet again like a problem's solution is turning out an even bigger problem in its own right. The Commission is unlikely to be able to meet all the demands made upon it and is calling 'a 'national debate'.

Leading to more of the same? Perish the thought!


Ricketts, A. (2013) Charity Commission is failing in its key roles, says National Audit Office, Third Sector, 4 December

* There is only one, tiny CE charity in Northern Ireland and, apart from the anomaly of Cumbernauld, nothing at all in Scotland.

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