Mediation for Charities

Mediation for Charities

In the NI Charity Commission’s 2014 report it highlighted as a concern

‘Disagreements and disputes within a charity’ and warned of the importance of Charities having a means of resolving such disputes since often these will not be something that the Commission has either the power or resources to become involved in. The report specifically indicates that the Commission will not mediate in such disputes and yet Charities often find themselves in a situation where there is deadlock between Trustees and a way out is hard to find.

The Charity Commission’s website provides guidance on these is sues (link) warning that

‘A dispute is a serious disagreement within a charity, which left unresolved, can lead to a breakdown in the effective governance and day to day management of a charity. Disputes most often occur in membership charities, but can also arise within the trustee body and between trustees of different charities’

It also sets out the Commission’s expectations of Charity Trustees when they find themselves dealing with an internal dispute:

‘We expect the trustees and the members of a charity, where these exist, to work in the best interests of the charity and to seek to resolve issues where they have the potential to damage the charity. The fact that a dispute exists does not necessarily mean that the Commission will become involved. We expect those involved to have exhausted all other means of resolving the dispute before approaching the Commission’.

It then goes on to strongly endorse the use of dispute resolution methods such as mediation.

the better way has a 3rd sector service specifically designed to help charities prevent, diagnose and resolve disputes.


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