The vast majority of charities are led by committed, expert individuals with a passion to change the world for the better. These leaders share the public’s shock and concern about recent reports of abuse within the charity sector. These are leaders who are constantly thinking about what is in the best interests of the people they support, and ACEVO is proud to represent them.
We are disappointed that William Shawcross has chosen to describe the actions of umbrella groups such as ACEVO as ‘absurd and counter-productive’. Good regulation is vital to the health and strength of the voluntary sector. We believe that good regulation is transparent, fair and enabling, and any interventions we have with the Commission are aimed at achieving these goals.
The public is right to expect high standards from charities and we share those expectations. The voluntary sector is a part of a society that has a systemic problem with gendered abuse and exploitation. We commit to zero tolerance of harassment, abuse and exploitation but it would be disingenuous and ultimately damaging to public trust to promise there will be zero incidents. Our focus will be on making sure those with complaints feel confident coming forward and supporting those in the sector to take action to minimise the risk of safeguarding incidents occurring.