The Lobbying Bill – Non-party campaigning – resources for MPs and media

NCVO is deeply concerned that changes to non-party campaigning rules in the lobbying bill will severely restrict the ability of charities to speak out on matters of public interest.

The proposals are intended to strengthen existing rules that limit what organisations can do to support political parties during an election. But the proposed changes mean that tens of thousands of charities and community groups may inadvertently be caught in the scope of deeply burdensome regulation. The new rules are so complex and unclear that they will be challenging if not impossible for charities and community groups to follow, NCVO believes.

The Electoral Commission, who would have to enforce the bill, say that it ‘raises significant issues of workability’ and ‘creates significant regulatory uncertainty for large and small organisations that campaign on, or even discuss, public policy issues … and imposes significant new burdens on such organisations’. Given the Electoral Commission would have to enforce these rules, their candid Briefing for MPs (PDF, 225KB) is essential reading.

Other reading on the bill:

Contact

Chloe Stables, parliamentary and media manager

chloe.stables@ncvo-vol.org.uk / 020 7520 2474 / 07507 558 597 / @ncvochlo

Aidan Warner, media officer

aidan.warner@ncvo-vol.org.uk / 020 7520 2413 / 07714 243 942 / @ncvoaidan

Elizabeth Chamberlain, senior policy officer

elizabeth.chamberlain@ncvo-vol.org.uk / @ncvoliz

Karl Wilding, director of public policy

karl.wilding@ncvo-vol.org.uk / @karlwilding

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Chloe Stables Chloe Stables, External Relations Manager, reflects on the latest political developments affecting the voluntary and community sector.

5 Responses to The Lobbying Bill – Non-party campaigning – resources for MPs and media

  1. Pingback: ID in the News» Blog Archive » The lobbying bill will save corporate PRs but silence the protesters

  2. peter last says:

    the Magna Carta was enacted to protect us from the unelected rulers of our country do we now have to call for a new Magna Carta to protect the rights of protest against some of our supposed elected protectors of democracy.

  3. Mike McLoughlin says:

    It is absolutely essential that small voluntary organisations such as the National Pensioners Convention are exempt from this undemocratic bill which seems to me to be clamping down on everyone and will prevent us from putting forward an argument in favour of those in society without a voice.

  4. dave hardaker says:

    this will seriously impact upon charities and is a major attack on our democracy

  5. As one who had suffered unduly under a malignant law for simply trying to make peace with my wife and her family, I am appalled at the indication that the proposed law will not only restrict the freedom of charities to express themselves on issues of concern to them, but would criminalise their leaders in doing so.

    As a Church of England priest, I am aware that concern has been expressed about the proposal law from the Church and faith communities as well.

    As an academic, I hope the government will allow the matter to be informed by proper debate before it is promoted in Parliament.