67% vote against payment of trustees in online poll
A proposal to allow charities with an income of over £1m to be able to pay their trustees has been rejected by volunteers and charity workers.
Social networking site ivo.org, which connects people and organisations who want to change their world, polled its members in July with the question 'Do you agree with Lord Hodgson’s recommendation that charities with an income above £1 million should be able to pay their volunteer trustees?'
67% voted against the recommendation with 33% voting in favour. 1,100 members, consisting of volunteers and people that work in the voluntary and community sector, voted in the poll.
Lord Hodgson's proposals were made as part of his wider review of the 2006 Charities Act. He recommended that large charities with an annual income above £1m should be able to pay their Trustees in the same way that companies can pay their board directors. This was based on the assumption that some charities find it difficult to recruit and retain quality trustees with the skills needed to govern large organisations and this will be improved if payment is allowed.
Commenting on the results of the poll, the CEO of Volunteering England, Justin Davis Smith, said,
"The result of the ivo poll reinforces our view that the sector prizes the voluntary nature of trusteeship. As we said when the recommendation was announced, it's a key element of the accountability of a trustee. But it also ensures the ethos of volunteering remains at the heart of charitable organisations."
Rob Jackson, Director of independent volunteering consultancy, Rob Jackson Consulting, agrees, he said,
"This finding echoes the research done by Lord Hodgson's own review and supports the argument that the majority of people are against payment of trustees. Put simply, there is no sound argument that supports the removal of this key principle of charity governance."