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Transparency bill for charitable donations

Amy Adams
National Party Selwyn MP

9 December 2009

Transparency bill for charitable donations passes first reading

Kiwis are one step closer to knowing how much of their donation ends up with the charity they’re giving to, Selwyn MP Amy Adams says.

Ms Adams welcomes the passage of her Fair Trading (Soliciting on behalf of Charities) Amendment Bill which passed its first reading today.

The Bill was supported by all MPs and will go to the Commerce select committee for a chance for the public to have their say, she said.

“This Bill is about informing consumers and rebuilding the public’s trust in the sector of charitable giving through enhanced transparency. New Zealanders have legitimate concerns about how much of their donations get to charities,” Ms Adams said.

“This Bill will ensure that people donating money to charity are told how much is going to fundraising firms.”

The Bill requires those who fundraise for charities to make sure consumers know a portion of any donation will be held back to cover fees. If more than half of a donation is to be kept by the fundraiser they will have to tell the donor the amount.

“Recent media reports have highlighted that it’s not uncommon for professional telemarketing and street collecting firms to retain 75-90 per cent of what they collect,” Ms Adams said.

“These cases have damaged the fundraising industry and have severely shaken confidence in charitable giving.

“We have many excellent and worthwhile charities and fundraising campaigns in New Zealand.

"I believe that this Bill will restore and protect confidence in those charities and fundraisers that run ethical and responsible campaigns.”

ENDS

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