'A series of scandals surrounding charities means that the British public is now no more likely to trust them than a “stranger in the street”, the head of the regulator has said in her major first speech.
Baroness Stowell of Beeston, Chair of the Charity Commission, said that the organisations could no longer expect to receive the “benefit of the doubt” as the public "have more evidence to prove their suspicions".
Picking out the sex scandal which rocked the sector earlier this year after Oxfam aid workers had been using prostitutes and complaints over the high salary of charity bosses, she said that people are “appalled” and feel “betrayed”.
In recent years the voluntary sector has also faced criticism for aggressive fundraising as exampled by the case of Olive Cooke, the 92-year-old poppy seller who took her own life after being hounded with begging letters.
Addressing the National Council for Voluntary Organisations’ annual conference, Baroness Stowell said that charities across the UK carry out important work, adding that the “potential of charity to build meaning and to contribute to a healthy, successful society is profound”.
But she admitted that “we have a problem” as some of those registered with the commission “are no longer trusted automatically by the public”.'
Read more: Charities no more trusted by British public than 'stranger in the street', regulator says
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