Campaigning and political activity can be legitimate and valuable activities for charities to undertake. However, charities must comply with the law. During an election period, the need for impartiality and balance is intensified, and charities must take particular care when undertaking any activities in the political arena.

The Charity Commission (‘the Commission’) uses the terms:

  • ‘political activity’ to refer to activity by a charity which is aimed at securing, or opposing, any change in the law or in the policy or decisions of central government, local authorities or other public bodies, whether in this country or abroad
  • ‘campaigning’ to refer to awareness-raising and efforts to educate or involve the public by mobilising their support on a particular issue, or to influence or change public attitudes

This case report contains an analysis of some of the key issues that we dealt with in cases we opened relating to campaigning and political activity by charities in the run-up to the General Election.

Read the full report from the Charity Commission