In line with its 2018/19 Programme for Government, the SNP Government has launched a public consultation on charity law, which sets out options to increase transparency, accountability and public trust in charities through the regulatory system in Scotland.
Options in the consultation include:
An external register of charity trustees;
Publishing annual reports and accounts in full for all charities on the Scottish Charity Register;
Removal of charities from the Scottish Charity Register that persistently fail to submit annual reports and accounts and may no longer exist;
All charities in the Scottish Charity Register to have and retain a connection in Scotland.
Communities Secretary Aileen Campbell MSP said:
"Charities play a vital role in our society, from supporting individuals and communities, to informing policy at a national level, they are key to us achieving our ambition of creating a fairer and more prosperous country.
"It is therefore important that we do all we can to maintain and increase public trust and confidence in the charity sector and making sure legislation supports that. I encourage everyone with an interest in the charity sector to share their views by responding to this consultation."
Kenneth Gibson MSP commented:
“Almost everyone donates to charity at some point, whether this is via a regular direct debit, a one-off coffee morning or a bequest. We do this out of trust that our money goes to those we wish to benefit.
“The 2018 Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) survey showed that 88% of people said that seeing evidence of a charity's achievements and knowing how much of their donation went to the cause would improve their trust in charities.
“This legislation aims to improve that and I encourage everyone to make their views known.”
The consultation runs from 7 January 2019 until 1 April 2019 and can be accessed here.