Charity Commission launches new online register 

03 Sep 2020 News

The Charity Commission has today launched its new online register of charities, which includes more details with the aim of increasing transparency. 

The new register replaces two previous versions of the longstanding search tool; the one from its old website and a beta tool which launched in 2015. Both now redirect to the new “check charity” search page

Users can now access information about how many senior executives earn more than £60,000, whether trustees are paid, and any income charities receive from government grants and contracts. 

The new display highlights where a charity is or has been the subject of regulatory scrutiny. It also shows whether individual charities work with a professional fundraiser and whether they have specific policies in place, including on safeguarding

Data giving an overview of the sector’s income, as well as other measures such as number of staff and volunteers, has also been moved over from the old website and is now downloadable. 

The Commission said that it will continue to improve the search tool, and would like feedback on the new register from members of the public, funders and charities themselves. 

It is already working on a second phase of work, which will include improvements to sharing the data. The aim is to allow web and app developers to access and analyse the register or display it on their own websites more easily, in line with open data principles.

‘Expectation of openness and transparency’ 

Helen Stephenson, chief executive of the Charity Commission, said: “Decisions about charitable donations are often very personal, influenced by our own life experiences, and those of our friends and family.

“But we know that most people share an expectation of openness and transparency from all charities. That’s why our new online register increases the range of information available at the click of a button.”

She added: “I also hope that the new register display will encourage charities to continue to respond to growing public expectations around transparency and accountability.

“We know the public expect the way charities go about their work to be consistent with the spirit of charity, and the new mirror we are holding up to the sector should help charities respond to those expectations.”

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