Charity Commission will look at how it deals with whistleblowers, says board member Peter Clarke

He tells a Fraud Advisory Panel conference that the regulator is reflecting on whether it can offer more support to those who report suspected wrongdoing at charities

Peter Clarke
Peter Clarke

The Charity Commission will examine whether it can improve the way it deals with whistleblowers who report fraud at their charities, according to Peter Clarke, one of the regulator’s board members.

Speaking in London on Friday at the Fraud Advisory Panel’s conference on tackling fraud in charities, Clarke said the commission was reflecting on whether it could offer more support to those who report suspected wrongdoing at charities.

Clarke, a former deputy assistant commissioner at the Metropolitan Police, made the comments as he summed up the messages presented during the course of the conference, saying there had rightly been a focus on the treatment of whistleblowers.

"Of course, the reputation of a charity can really suffer badly if a whistle has been blown but has not been heard, or it has been heard and nothing was done," he said.

"And indeed, we ourselves at the Charity Commission are very conscious of this and we’ll be looking at this very carefully over the coming months."

But Clarke added that he did not mean to say the commission did not respond to whistleblowers.

"We’re saying we like to think we’re a learning and reflecting organisation, and we want to make sure we’re doing as much as we can, as well as we can and as promptly as we can," he said. "We’re always trying to do things better."

A spokeswoman for the Charity Commission said this examination of the regulator’s processes would not take the form of a formal review or consultation, but would be looked at in the commission’s annual Tackling Abuse and Mismanagement in Charities report, due to be published in the next few weeks.

She added: "We would always encourage anyone with genuine concerns to come to us."

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