Appeal “LGB Alliance’s” charity status

by Good Law Project

Appeal “LGB Alliance’s” charity status

by Good Law Project
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Latest: June 16, 2021

The Tribunal has set out next steps

Two weeks ago, we supported Mermaids in launching a challenge to the Charity Commission’s decision to grant LGB Alliance charitable status. The First Tier Tribunal has now set out deadlines for…

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Charitable status is earned by those who serve the public good. Denigrating trans people, attacking those who speak for them, and campaigning to remove legal protections from them is the very opposite of a public good. 

Whatever sweet nothings the so-called “LGB Alliance” whispered into the ear of the Charity Commission the truth was set out in a speech by LGB Alliance director Bev Jackson on 9 March 2020. She described their real goal as follows:

“We’re applying for charitable status and building an organization to challenge the dominance of those who promote the damaging theory of gender identity.”

Their purpose is the denigration of trans people and the destruction of organisations that support them, in particular through political lobbying and campaigning for law change. 

These purposes are reprehensible and they are not charitable; they are political objectives - to roll back legal protections for trans people. 

To be registered as a charity, an organisation must be established exclusively for purposes which the law recognises as charitable, and it must pursue them in a way which gives rise to tangible benefits that outweigh any associated harms. 

We don’t believe that legal threshold has been met. 

So Mermaids, supported by LGBT+ Consortium, Gendered Intelligence, LGBT Foundation, TransActual, and Good Law Project, are appealing the Charity Commission’s decision to award the so-called “LGB Alliance” charity status. 

We have instructed Bindmans to act as solicitors. Michael Gibbon QC and Ted Loveday at Maitland Chambers are acting as Counsel. 

The case is not straightforward. There is very little law about who can challenge a flawed decision to recognise someone as a charity. But LGBTQ+ people across the UK face an onslaught of misinformation and attacks in the mainstream press, in politics and on social media. Those carrying out those attacks ought not to be dignified with charitable status - and the attacks should not be subsidised by the tax reliefs available to charities.

We, the country’s leading LGBTQ+ charities and organisations, speak with the single voice of a single community when we say our community will not be divided. We oppose transphobia in all its forms. We stand together.

Details

You can read the appeal as filed here and the supporting documents here. 

Any surplus will go to Good Law Project’s Legal Defence Fund for Transgender Lives. 

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Update 1

Good Law Project

June 16, 2021

The Tribunal has set out next steps

Two weeks ago, we supported Mermaids in launching a challenge to the Charity Commission’s decision to grant LGB Alliance charitable status. The First Tier Tribunal has now set out deadlines for the next stage of the appeal.

By 13 July, the Commission must produce a response explaining its decision to register LGB Alliance. It also has to provide copies of any documents which it relied on in reaching its decision, and any other documents which might support Mermaids’ case. Our legal team will review that material carefully and, if possible, will use it to bolster the appeal.

There will then be a case management hearing in early September, at which the Tribunal will decide how to progress the appeal to a final hearing.

For now, we await the Commission’s response – we will keep you posted. 

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