Rob Wilson reappointed Minister for Civil Society | Sector leaders call for launch of sustainability fund | Panorama exposé did not affect public opinion, says Comic Relief

Plus: Charity campaigning has an undeservedly bad name, says peer | 92-year-old women 'hounded to death' by fundraising, newspapers claim | Trustee used charity to 'launder money made from a brothel'

Rob Wilson, the Minister for Civil Society
Rob Wilson, the Minister for Civil Society

Rob Wilson, the MP for Reading East, has retained his job as the Minister for Civil Society. The Cabinet Office confirmed that Wilson, who was appointed charities minister in September last year after the resignation of Brooks Newmark, will keep the brief after Prime Minister David Cameron's reshuffle.

Charity leaders, including Neil Cleeveley of Navca and Sir Stephen Bubb of Acevo, have called on Wilson to swiftly launch the long-awaited Local Sustainability Fund. The fund was first announced last year by Nick Hurd, the former Minister for Civil Society.

A BBC Panorama documentary that raised ethical concerns about Comic Relief's investments had little long-term effect on the charity's reputation, and its decision to immediately divest its suspect assets might have been too hasty, according to the charity's finance director. Helen Wright, the charity’s finance director, told delegates at the Charity Finance Group's annual conference that the public were "less sensitive than we sometimes think".

Charity campaigning is being given an undeservedly bad name by people "promoting the notion that it is a dirty word", according to the crossbench peer Lord Low of Dalston. Low, who is leading a review of sector regulation for the charity leaders group Acevo, told a conference organised by the Directory of Social Change that one of his priorities for the Charity Commission would be for it to understand the importance of campaigning.

The mental health charity Mind is to look into whether it acted inappropriately after the death of a 92-year-old woman who allegedly received more than 260 fundraising letters from a variety of charities in one month. Many national newspapers prominently ran the story of the death of Olive Cooke, who was found in the Avon Gorge near the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol last week, with several connecting her death to the volume of charity fundraising requests she received.

The Charity Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into the poverty charity Urban Relief after one of its trustees was jailed for using the charity to launder money made from a brothel. Francis Uwagbae, a trustee of the charity, was imprisoned for 10 months in January after he pleaded guilty at Blackfriars Crown Court in London of laundering money made from a brothel.

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