Volunteer rights panel is named

Volunteering England scheme will tackle grievances

The members of a panel that will produce a report into volunteers' rights have been announced.

The group, which has been set up by Volunteering England , will include volunteer rights campaigners and the woman charged with tackling volunteer grievances at Citizens Advice.

One member is Lewis Smith, coordinator of the Volunteer Rights Group, which was formed last year by a group of volunteers who walked out of their posts at York Citizens Advice Bureau in support of a 'sacked' colleague. Another is Julia Dennis, the new volunteering development manager at Citizens Advice.

The panel will produce a report covering the current legal status of volunteers and the opportunities they have for the redress of grievances.

It will make recommendations on how volunteers' rights could better be enforced. Proposals have included an ombudsman and giving volunteers the protection of employment legislation and the Equality Act.

Sukhvinder Kaur-Stubbs, the former chief executive of the Barrow Cadbury Trust and current chair of Volunteering England, will also be on the panel, as will Jodi Berg, the independent complaints reviewer for the Charity Commission, and Judith Brodie, UK director of volunteering charity VSO.

It is expected to produce its report in the spring.

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