Some charities may not be too keen on the idea but the Fundraising Preference Service has received a big thumbs’ up from consumers, with the vast majority (72%) believing the scheme will help restore trust in charities.
The FPS, chaired by George Kidd, has no official launch date, with a working group currently looking into how it will operate. However, Kidd has already stated it is likely that organisations will also not be able to use existing relationships with supporters to avoid sanctions; once a consumer has signed up to the FPS, they should be removed from all lists.
Under the scheme, consumers will be able to prevent any charities contacting them by telephone, direct mail or email, although the Information Commissioner Christopher Graham has already stated his opposition to the plan, branding it “confusing”.
Even so, the issue – revealed in YouGov’s Charity Reputation Research – is not the most pressing, with the need for greater transparency about how a charity’s money is spent – selected by 78% of respondents – being seen as the most important factor.
2015’s annus horribilis has also badly affected public trust in charities, with only 38% now saying they consider charities trustworthy, compared with 54% in 2013.
And it is larger charities which have borne the brunt of the blame, with 62% of those surveyed saying the behaviour of large organisations in the past few years had damaged the reputation of the sector as a whole.
More than 2,000 people were asked to select from a list of measures they believed would best help to restore public trust in the sector.
Asked if they believed it was fair or unfair for charities to have been accused of aggressive fundraising, 67% of respondents said it was fair although 21% believed it was unfair.
Of those who thought the accusation that charities had used aggressive fundraising was fair, a further 61% said they did not believe larger charities were taking the accusation seriously.
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