Electoral Commission begins survey of charity views on lobbying act

It has been working with the Charity Commission to draw up the questionnaire and the answers will be used when it draws up guidance to the act

Electoral Commission
Electoral Commission

The Electoral Commission has launched a survey that asks charities how they think the lobbying act might affect their campaigning activities.

Charities and other non-party campaigning groups have until 14 March to fill out the questionnaire, which can be found on the commission’s website.

The regulator said it had been working with the Charity Commission to produce guidance on the Transparency of Lobbying, Non-party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014 to help charities and campaigning organisations understand and comply with the new rules.

Questions include "how confident or not are you that you understand the new rules on non-party campaigning?" and "what information on non-party campaigning would you like in our guidance?"

Responses to the survey will help to shape the guidance, the Electoral Commission said.

A spokesman for the Electoral Commission said: "The survey is anonymous, so we’d encourage charities to put down as much information as possible about their campaigning plans in the run-up to the general election, because that will help us."

The Electoral Commission and the Charity Commission are holding joint round-table events around the UK to hear the concerns of charities and campaign groups.

One such event was held in London on Monday and another is taking place in Belfast next Wednesday at the Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action, which will bring together sector umbrella bodies, charities and religious organisations. Round tables will also take place in Scotland and Wales.

The guidance is expected to be published in early July.

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