Fundraising Regulation update from Jennie Moule, Interim Executive Director, CASE Europe
I’m writing this having attended the FRCC on behalf of CASE Europe earlier this week. It was wonderful to see so many members of our community represented in person and watching via the (rather unreliable) livestream.
John Middleton and the CASE Europe team have been working on your behalf advocating for our community ever since the question of fundraising regulation and compliance moved to the fore in summer 2015. We will continue to be in conversation with all of the regulators, with HEFCE, and with other relevant bodies such as UUK and the Institute of Fundraising.
I want to provide you with some information about how we have been approaching this, what our plans are going forward, and how you can get involved.
CASE and UUK Compliance Working Group
In November 2016, CASE and UUK formed a working group to help provide our members with greater guidance and clarity on the incoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and more generally on fundraising compliance. The group is chaired by Sarah Howes, Associate Director, Office of Development & Alumni Relations at The University of Southampton, and includes representatives from across our member community. The working group has four sub groups working on key areas. Below is an update on what the groups are currently doing and a contact point should you want to get in touch.
· Market Research: The sub group is in the early stages of commissioning academic research in to what alumni, supporters and donors would consider “reasonable expectation” in terms of how we use their data. We would like to get as big a data set as possible and so if your institution or organisation would be interested in taking part in this research please email email@example.com with the subject line “GDPR Group Research.”
Group lead: Adrian Beney, More Partnership, firstname.lastname@example.org
· Data Consistency/Opt In: This sub group is developing guidance on Privacy Impact Assessments, including a template adapted for the sector, as well as tools to classify and audit data across Development Offices and the wider organisation. On the issue of creating opt-in culture, the group plans to provide guidance on best practice language in general and hard-to-reach groups such as older alumni in particular.
Group lead: Sarah Howes, University of Southampton, email@example.com
· Technology: This technical sub-group will seek to provide guidance on how Development Offices may best collect, record and use appropriate consents, and wider supporter preferences, for their alumni, donors, visitors, friends and other external stakeholders — particularly within the context of the new GDPR and Fundraising Preference Service (FPS) — and offer general examples for ways in which technologies can support these processes.
Group lead: Dan Keyworth, Blackbaud, firstname.lastname@example.org
· Advocacy: This group seeks to create an advocacy agenda for our community including making recommendations to CASE and UUK about how they can advocate on your behalf. They are identifying the key issues and questions, the routes for advocacy, and the resources that will be helpful to individual members as they create their own responses to ongoing consultation opportunities. The group is working on a response to the various guidance and consultation documents that have now been issued.
Group lead: Carol Solley, University of Birmingham, email@example.com
The working group meets monthly. If you have any questions about the group or would like to volunteer your skills, please email Kate Wallace, UK Member Services Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
UUK is additionally developing a briefing note that will be publicised towards the end of this month and CASE will ensure it is circulated to our community.
Fundraising Regulator: Code of Practice Consultation
In February, The Fundraising Regulator released a consultation on revisions to the Fundraising Code of Practice. The advocacy group will put forward a response on behalf of CASE and the working group but we encourage CASE members to contribute their thoughts as well.
The FRCC and Guidance from the ICO and the Fundraising Regulator
The ICO have updated their Charity webpages and we recommend you take the time to review some of their guidance: https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/charity/
In particular they released a pre-conference paper which is clear about their views on compliance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and current fundraising practices.
You can also read a copy of the Information Commissioner’s conference speech: https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/news-and-events/news-and-blogs/2017/02/fundraising-and-regulatory-compliance-conference/
The Fundraising Regulator have now issued their guidance on consent and this can be found here: https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/information-registration-for-fundraisers/guidance/personal-information-fundraising-consent-purpose-transparency/
We expect further guidance from the ICO on consent to be issued in the next 2–3 weeks.
Whilst it is helpful to get further clarity from the regulators, I am conscious that there is an information overload. The FR guidance document alone is over 50 pages. The Charity Commission took an action away from the FRC conference to try and pull together some simple consistent joint advice from all three regulators and so we will wait to see what that looks like. In the meantime, the advocacy sub-group will be digesting the documents on behalf of our community and trying to make sense of what it means for us. We will publish further information and briefing documents as soon as we can, bearing in mind the landscape is still evolving.
What’s the future for fundraising in education?
The Commissioner made it very clear this week that, whilst there are still opportunities for feedback and consultation, they want to see us investing our energies into how to excel within this next context rather than trying to change the ‘rules’. We are going to have to implement some changes to how we operate. It is still unclear to me what the boundaries are going to be but I think the most important take away for us all is that we need to continue to focus on our supporters, the experience we provide them, and how we can continue to stay relevant to them whatever their stage of life.
This work is of utmost importance to CASE and our communities of practice. I will personally be leading our response to the changing situation. We want to provide our members with information and guidance during what I know is a confusing and worrying time. I am interested to hear from you about what you need and want from us, so please do get in touch via email@example.com
I look forward to working with old friends and new across the sector.
Jennie Moule, Interim Executive Director, CASE Europe