How will the proposed changes to governance standards affect you? We want to know.
15 July 2021 at 8:39 am
Charities are being encouraged to take part in a survey on the impacts of the government’s proposed changes
With only three weeks to go until the government tables the regulation, we want to know what you think about the controversial proposal to change charitable governance standards.
Last month, the government laid out an amended plan to strengthen laws to ensure charities that engage in or use their resources to actively promote unlawful behaviour face enforcement action.
The planned amendment to Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) governance standard 3, would expand the reasons for which a charity can be deregistered beyond indictable offences to include summary offences, such as trespassing, theft, vandalism or assault.
Charities have previously come out strongly against the plan – which is part of a government crackdown on “activist organisations masquerading as charities” – arguing that it could see charities shut down for speaking out and would impose a significant administrative burden.
But the federal government has defended the proposal. Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar, the minister responsible for the ACNC, has said the regulations do not impose a new burden on charities that are already complying with Australian laws.
Now, Pro Bono News has launched a survey to find out how Australian charities will be affected.
Pro Bono Australia founder and CEO Karen Mahlab AM said the changes could have a significant impact on the sector and she encouraged all charities to take part in the survey.
“We do this rarely and only when we feel there is an issue of high importance to our sector that needs a broad based response from the sector and a voice into government,” she said.
“The proposed changes could have a far-reaching and damaging impact on our sector, and the issue needs to be taken seriously. This is a chance for Australian charities to have their say before the changes become law.”
To find out more about the proposed changes, see this explainer from the Human Rights Law Centre.