Whistleblowing reports to Charity Commission up by 15 per cent

A report from the regulator says 101 such reports were made in the last financial year, compared with 88 in 2016/17

Whistleblowing: on the rise
Whistleblowing: on the rise

The number of whistleblowing reports made to the Charity Commission grew by almost 15 per cent last year, figures show.

Whistleblowing statistics published by the commission today show that 101 whistleblowing reports were made by charity employees to the regulator in the year to the end of March, compared with 88 the year before.

An increase in the number of safeguarding issues was the main reason for the increase, the commission’s figures show, with 24 complaints in 2017/18 compared with 15 the previous year.

This follows a number of major safeguarding scandals in the international development sector in the first few months of 2018, specifically widely publicised incidents at Oxfam and Save the Children.

Governance issues continued to be the most common reason for whistleblowing complaints, the Charity Commission said: there were 60 complaints in the last financial year, compared with 57 in 2016/17.

Fraud and money laundering, theft, criminality, terrorism and sham charities were also cited as reasons for whistleblowing reports being made, the regulator said.

Of the 101 reports the regulator received, it identified 82 as requiring some regulatory action, but most of these were dealt with by advice from the commission.

Of those cases, 51 had been closed, with 39 needing some form of guidance or advice and 15 indicating "a higher level of regulatory activity", the commission said.

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