better regulation of charities increases public trust says former regulator


Better regulation of charities increases public trust says former regulator

Charities benefit from increased public trust and confidence when they are perceived to be being more effectively regulated, argues a former head of the Charity Commission.

Professor Andrew Hind, chief executive of the Charity Commission, between 2004 and 2010 asserts that charities need a regulator that is on their side; and, that the philosophy underpinning the charity regulator’s activities should be one that encourages innovation, dynamism and the sharing of best practice.

Professor Hind said:
“It is no good just cracking the whip where things go wrong, you have to be able to paint a picture of what ‘right’looks like. Improvement across the sector comes from raising standards and expectations, not bearing down with increasing levels of red tape and bureaucracy.” 

Writing in the May edition of Public Money & Management journal, Professor Hind outlines the practical steps required of a charity regulator to enable a standard raising regulatory approach.  These steps include:  

  • Building a ‘customer service’ culture.
  • Adopting a proportionate approach to its compliance work.
  • Reducing the regulatory burden for charities
  • Developing accessible advice and guidance for trustees
  • Promoting the transparency and accountability of charities.

Analysing how the transformation of the Commission’s regulatory approach fed through to increase awareness of itself, its work and a greater level of public trust in charities generally, Professor Hind said:

‘Intuitively, I have always thought that a Charity Commission with a higher public profile, and with an improved reputation for effectiveness in all its guises, should have a positive impact on how the public trust charities.’


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Notes to Editors:

  • For a full copy of Professor Andrew Hind’s article, Increasing public trust and confidence in charities: on the side of angels, please contact the CIPFA press office.
  • The May 2011 issue of Public Money & Management is on sale from the 28 April.


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