MacDonald warns of bogus doorstep collectors

Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald is alerting constituents who give unwanted goods on their doorstep to charitable causes to be careful when doing so to ensure that the goods reach genuine beneficiaries.

The MSP is supporting the ‘Give with Care Campaign’ launched by the Institute of Fundraising and the Fundraising Standards Board.

Clothing and textiles is the fastest growing area of household waste at around 2 million tonnes per annum.  Of this, as much as 1.2 million tonnes ends up in landfill. Charity collections are an important way of not only reducing waste and preserving our environment, but of generating vital funding.  Clothing collections raise an estimated £250 million for UK charities each year.  Some charities collect goods themselves, others (particularly smaller charities and those without the necessary infrastructure or reach) use commercial organisations to collect on their behalf.

Angus MacDonald MSP is urging constituents to:

1. First & foremost to Keep Giving - beneficiaries need you to donate goods that charities can sell on. Use the following checks before you give to doorstep collectors. Or, if you can, donate directly to your local charity shop.

2. Check for a Scottish charity number and look for the FRSB’s “tick” logo on a charity’s literature.

3. Look for a working telephone number which any legitimate collector will display.

4. Some collectors may not be registered charities but still collect for legitimate good causes in your area. Bogus collectors will often promote vague causes rather than specific charities or local good causes.

5. If you are still in doubt, contact The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator on 01382 220446 or by clicking www.oscr.org.uk.

Commenting on the need for vigilance Mr MacDonald said: 

“It is a sad reality that some bogus firms are in operation collecting doorstep donations and misleading the public into believing that they are being sold for charitable causes, or in some instances stealing goods intended for charities. 

“Doorstep collections form an important part of the business of genuine charities I want to encourage those who donate to carry on doing so, but to also take care to ensure they are giving to legitimate charities. 

“The Institute of Fundraising and FRSB have outlined these helpful checks and I welcome the opportunity to endorse this approach.”

Copyright © Angus MacDonald MSP 2017

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