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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Fundraising Regulator finds charity breached code with ‘misleading’ tweet

 

The LGB Alliance has pledged to be clearer in future. 

A charity branded a “transphobic hate group” has been forced to apologise after it was found to have breached the Financial Regulator's code of practice. 

In a decision paper, published on September 7, the regulator outlined decisions on two ongoing investigations. 

One, regarding the LGB Alliance, saw regulators decide that the charity misleadingly claimed to be the only registered charity set up to protect and promote the rights and interests of people with lesbian, gay and bisexual orientation. 

The group had initially rejected the substance of the complaint, claiming it was inaccurate, suggesting the person who made the complaint was ignorant of how it differed from other charities. 

The report states: “The charity also said that the complainant had not understood that LGB Alliance was set up because no other charity was supporting same sex attracted people.

“The complainant was unhappy with the charity’s response and said that there are many other charities that provide a range of services and support to thousands of lesbian, gay and bisexual people.”

The Code of Fundraising Practice requires that fundraising materials must not mislead anyone, or be likely to mislead anyone, either by leaving out information or by being inaccurate or ambiguous or by exaggerating details.

However, the LGB Alliance has since accepted the tweet in question could have been clearer, pledging to provide greater clarity in future. 

The Fundraising Regulator found that the tweet posted breached the code because it was misleading. The charity “was unable to provide evidence to prove its claim”, it said. 

It also found the charity breached the code with regards to its complaints handling, initially failing to properly engage with the issues raised. 

The regulator recommended that the charity: “Carefully considers the wording it uses when fundraising so that it presents sufficient information for donors to understand the charity’s position; ensures there is evidence to support any claims it makes when fundraising;

considers how it can ensure the learning from this case is shared internally; and

considers using a third party to help resolve future complaints of a contentious nature.”

The decision comes one month after Free Pride Glasgow returned funding and scaled back this year’s event after learning that the LGB Alliance had also been supported. 

The LGB Alliance was approached for comment. 

The report states: “The charity has accepted our findings and recommendations. The charity has also offered to provide an apology to the complainant.”

 

Comments

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Hilary Lowson
3 months ago

Leading the description of this organisation with what they have been 'branded' rather than what they are actually about is disingenuous and merely indicates some sort of support for such unfair, inaccurate 'branding'. In short, very poor journalism. Certainly not of a standard expected in this sector.