The Fundraising Regulation's updated guidance on handling complaints

The Fundraising Regulator has published new guidance on fundraising complaints procedures for charities which it recommends are made publically available. This applies to charities where they fundraise directly and where the charity gives its authority to a third party to fundraise in its name.

The guidance suggests that where charities implement complaint procedures they should illustrate the range of complaints they will consider, any proposed remedies and how long they will take to investigate complaints.

These procedures should be easily accessible to the public, for example through publication on the charity’s website. The Fundraising Regulator also requires charities to ‘clearly signpost’ to the public their ability to seek recourse with Regulator independent from their own complaints policy.

As best practice the Fundraising Regulator recommends that complaints are considered within a charity but by somebody independent of the complaint and where this is not possible the charity should consider involving a third party.

The Regulator’s guidance also emphasises the need for charities to use complaints as a learning process. It illustrates in particular a need to establish a constructive dialogue with complainants by, for example ‘telling the complainant about the lessons learnt and any changes made to services, guidance or policy as a result of the complaint’.

Charities should consider implementing internal Complaints Policies to guide staff in responding to complaints quickly and helpfully. If you would like to discuss how your charity could adopt such a policy please do contact any member of our team.

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