Fundraising Standards Board will ask members why people complained about email and doorstep fundraising

Alistair McLean, chief executive of the FRSB, says it wants to understand why there were large increases in the number of complaints attracted by both methods

Alistair McLean
Alistair McLean

The Fundraising Standards Board will ask members to pass on to it the reasons for complaints about email and doorstep fundraising so it can understand why they have increased in recent years.

The FRSB today called for charities and suppliers to begin submitting information on complaints they received for various fundraising methods during 2012, to be included in its annual report.

For the past three years, the self-regulatory body has analysed the causes for direct mail and telephone fundraising complaints. It said it would change this focus to doorstep and email fundraising, which are the next two most complained-about techniques.

The biggest percentage rise in complaints in 2011 was for email fundraising, up by 282 per cent from 464 in 2010 to 1,773 in 2011. A total of 30,838 complaints were reported to the FRSB in 2011, including 2,877 for doorstep fundraising.

Complaints about doorstep fundraising raised directly with the FRSB almost trebled in 2012: it received 14 complaints about the technique in 2011, compared with 40 last year.

Alistair McLean, chief executive of the FRSB, said: "This year, we want to drill down into complaints on doorstep and email fundraising, looking to identify the main issues that concern the public.

"Both techniques attract a significant number of complaints, with concerns about email having risen more than any other fundraising technique during 2011, despite a relatively moderate growth in the volume of activity reported. A recent surge in the level of doorstep fundraising complaints received directly by the FRSB from members of the public also warrants further investigation."

All organisations that signed up to regulation through the FRSB before July 2012 must complete a return and submit it before 8 March. If it is not completed, this is highlighted on the member’s listing on the FRSB and Give With Confidence websites.

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