National Lottery Community Fund staff raised concerns about LGB Alliance grant

The National Lottery Community Fund’s own staff have raised concerns over its decision to fund the LGB Alliance, Third Sector understands.

The NLCF did not deny the claim, made by people familiar with the situation, and said only that it had received correspondence about the £9,000 grant “expressing both support and concern” and that it could not comment “on matters raised by individual members of staff”.

The funder announced earlier this month that it was funding the LGB Alliance to undertake preparatory work for a national advice line for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people.

The LGB Alliance, which was set up in 2019 by a group of activists and former Stonewall supporters who were opposed to the charity’s work on transgender rights, was registered as a charity last year. 

In agreeing the registration, the Charity Commission rejected claims that the LGB Alliance discriminated against transgender people or was primarily a political organisation. 

Last summer the regulator contacted the charity over the content of its social media, after one of its tweets was found to breach Twitter’s rules.

Sarah Vibert, then interim chief executive of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, tweeted that she believed the decision to register the LGB Alliance as a charity “will be painful and dangerous for transgender people harmed by the views and actions of the alliance”.

A coalition of charities has been crowdfunding to challenge the decision to register the LGB Alliance and a court hearing is scheduled to take place in September.

In April, the London Community Foundation withdrew a grant award to the LGB Alliance after protests from some campaigners, saying that it had not been aware the charity’s status was being challenged in court.

The NLCF said it had no plans to reconsider its grant.

A spokesperson for the funder said: “We can confirm that we have awarded LGB Alliance a £9,000 National Lottery Awards for All grant for a project to scope the need, feasibility, constituent elements and operating parameters of a national advice service for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people aged 13 to 25.

“We are satisfied that this project meets our eligibility criteria for funding.

“We have received a range of correspondence in relation to this grant expressing both support and concern. We’re grateful to those who have taken the time to contact us and remain confident about our decision to make this award.

“For confidentiality reasons we are not able to comment on matters raised by individual members of staff.”

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