Defend LGB Alliance's Charity Status

by LGB Alliance

Defend LGB Alliance's Charity Status

by LGB Alliance
LGB Alliance
Case Owner
We're defending the right of LGB Alliance to retain its status as a charity promoting the rights of lesbians, gay men & bisexuals as defined in the Equality Act (2010) -- that is, on the basis of sex.
26
days to go
£189,072
pledged of £215,000 stretch target from 5,165 pledges
Pledge now
LGB Alliance
Case Owner
We're defending the right of LGB Alliance to retain its status as a charity promoting the rights of lesbians, gay men & bisexuals as defined in the Equality Act (2010) -- that is, on the basis of sex.
Pledge now

This case is raising funds for its stretch target. Your pledge will be collected within the next 24-48 hours (and it only takes two minutes to pledge!)

Latest: Sept. 6, 2022

Case starting om Friday 9 September

On Friday 9 September our case starts at the First-Tier Tribunal of the General Regulatory Chamber at Field House, 15-25 Breams Buildings, London EC4A 1DZ.

This is the first time a charity (Mermaids) …

Read more

LGB Alliance is one of a dwindling number of organisations across the world that focuses exclusively on the rights of LGB people. We believe we are now the only group in the UK that defends and promotes the interests of LGB people as defined in the Equality Act (2010) – that is, on the basis of biological sex. Yet we’ve faced many threats from the day we were formed. Lies have been told, false stories circulated, and petitions have been organised against us. Our Crowdfunders were taken down, and boycotts mounted of anyone who dared to show support. The tone of claims about us has been angry and sometimes vicious. We’ve just got on with the job we were set up to do, which is to defend and promote the interests and rights of lesbians, gays and bisexuals.

Now Mermaids is challenging the Charity Commission’s decision to award us charity status. We’re determined to defend what was an important breakthrough.

We are therefore raising funds to pay the necessary legal fees. If Mermaids succeeds, we will have our charitable status cancelled and will no longer be able to do our job as effectively as we would like to.

The substance of our case is primarily that Mermaids has no standing on which to bring this case. See s.319(2)(b) Charities Act 2011, which points to Schedule 6 Column 2 of the Act. These say that the only people who can bring such litigation are the Attorney General, the trustees of LGB Alliance, LGB Alliance itself, or “any other person who is or may be affected by the decision”.

Mermaids say they are “any other person who is or may be affected by the decision”. Both we and the Charity Commission have set out why Mermaids’ pleaded case is simply wrong and they don’t have standing.

There is a clear precedent in Nicholson v the Charity Commission for England and Wales [2016] UKUT 198 (TCC). The ruling stated that a person has no standing to bring an appeal of this nature even if they “disagree[s] with the decision [to register a charity] emotionally, politically or intellectually and as a result is affected emotionally and/or socially”. This perfectly describes and therefore excludes Mermaids from bringing its case. Mermaids’ case should therefore, we say, be thrown out.

Secondarily, even if the tribunal rules that they do have standing, their case has no merit. The substance of Mermaids’ appeal is that they disagree with our views on sex and gender. We take what has become known as a “gender-critical” approach to these matters: that sex in humans is biological and immutable. Mermaids say that this is wrong, and any charity that is founded on these principles is unworthy of registration as a charity.

Our lawyers are Peter Daly and a team at Doyle Clayton, and Alice de Coverley at 3 Paper Buildings. Their work up to now has been fantastic but we did not want to be in this litigation.

We are now at a stage where we need to raise money to complete the litigation. We are the underdog in this battle.

Mermaids have a team of lawyers and a conglomerate of other organisations in the background. They have raised around £70,000 for this case so far. Our opponents are extremely well resourced.

In the first instance, we are seeking £5,000 as an initial target. This will help cover the costs we have incurred to date. If the matter proceeds, we will need to raise more. Any surplus will be reallocated to cases that defend LGB rights and the importance in law of biological sex.

This is a crucial case for us. If we lose our charity status it will be harder to raise funds for the important work we plan to do: such as offering assistance to young and vulnerable lesbians, pushing back against the erasure of LGB people across the world, and reviving LGB culture. It will also be a blow to the right of same-sex attracted people to lawfully organise and form a regulated charity. If we lose, people with same-sex sexual orientation will lose a fundamental legal right.

Please support us.

We will be very grateful for all your donations!

Recent contributions

Support the case

Be a promoter

Your share on Facebook could raise £26 for the case

I'll share on Facebook
Update 5

LGB Alliance

Sept. 6, 2022

Case starting om Friday 9 September

On Friday 9 September our case starts at the First-Tier Tribunal of the General Regulatory Chamber at Field House, 15-25 Breams Buildings, London EC4A 1DZ.

This is the first time a charity (Mermaids) has ever challenged the registration of another charity in court.

We have not yet been informed whether the hearing will be in-person only or a hybrid hearing (that is, permitting online observers).  

LGB Alliance will be represented by Karon Monaghan QC and Akua Reindorf. We want to thank Alice de Coverley for the work she did earlier in preparing this case.

Our solicitor is Peter Daly of Doyle Clayton.

We want to thank all our wonderful supporters who have contributed to funding this case. We hope that those who can afford it will continue to do so.




Update 4

LGB Alliance

Aug. 18, 2022

New link for pleadings following website update

Because of the recent update to our website, the link to the pleadings we submitted has changed. You can now find them at: 

https://lgballiance.org.uk/pleadings-by-the-trustees-of-lgb-alliance-in-the-case-of-mermaids-appellant-and-the-charity-commission-for-england-and-wales-respondent/



Update 3

LGB Alliance

July 8, 2022

Our Fight For Survival. Tribunal Hearing 9 to 16 Sep 2022

Please help us to retain our charitable status

Our charitable status is being challenged by Mermaids. Mermaids says that LGB Alliance, the only UK charity working exclusively for lesbians, gay men and bisexuals, should not have been given charitable status.

We believe this is a fundamental attack on the rights of people with same-sex sexual orientation to organise in our own interests.

The Tribunal hearing is to be held from 9 to 16 September. The issues to be determined will be:

  1. Whether Mermaids has legal standing to bring this appeal. We say Mermaids does not.
  2. Whether LGB Alliance sufficiently fulfils the requirements of public good to be registered as a charity. We say that we do.

Mermaids has ensured that the hearing is much longer than we had hoped by submitting a very large volume of paperwork and by presenting three witnesses, forcing us to provide an effective rebuttal.

Given the extent of witness and documentary evidence we have been required to prepare, we have added Karon Monaghan QC and a junior barrister to our legal team.

The significantly longer hearing, and the need to add a QC, has increased our costs significantly and so we are forced to raise our crowdfunding target to £215,000.

This is a vast sum of money.  But this case is existential to us, and to the rights of people with same-sex sexual orientation to organise in our own interests.

Mermaids is a well-funded organisation with many employees. We have one part-time member of staff and rely on small individual donations to do our work. So as well as presenting us with financial difficulties, this case has meant our volunteers, who are passionate about working to support LGB people, have instead been forced to spend months on preparing our defence.

We want you to know that we did not seek this fight but we will not hide from it. So please help us if you can. We promise we will continue to be fearless in our defence of LGB people and that we will do everything in our power to be deserving of your support.

Update 2

LGB Alliance

Oct. 30, 2021

We did it!

We're delighted and grateful that we reached our initial stretch target within 12 hours! Our new stretch target is 45,000. A reminder: any surplus will be reallocated to other cases defending LGB rights or the importance in law of biological sex. Thank you so much for your contributions. Your fantastic, positive messages of solidarity and support are greatly appreciated. 

Support the case

    There are no public comments on this case page.