UK Charity Commission publishes details of whistleblowing disclosures made in 2020 to 2021

Article 28 October 2021 Experience: Charities and non-profit

The Charity Commission has released a report on its approach to whistleblowing, which also gives information on the types of whistleblowing disclosures it received between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021.

In that period, the Commission received 431 disclosures – an increase from 247 disclosures in the previous period (and up from 185 disclosures in the year before that), continuing the trend of increasing numbers each year. The majority of disclosures were received from employees and ex-employees (50.8%), however the proportion of reports from other sources (including Trustees) has increased.

The top three subjects of disclosures concerned: (1) governance; (2) safeguarding; and (3) financial management concerns. The number of reports related to financial management more than doubled in comparison in the previous period, which may be linked to the financial challenges charities have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Commission has also included details of the distribution of whistleblowing reports across different types of charity. Charities with ‘Education/Training’ purposes received the most reports, and in terms of how charities operate, it was those that provide services with the most disclosures. In response to the disclosures, the most common action taken by the Commission was to provide advice to the charities. 312 cases were dealt with and closed during the period.

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