Charities to be fully exempt from advertising restrictions

The Charities Institute Ireland announced a positive update yesterday regarding the Gambling Bill and its impact on charity fundraising through raffles and lotteries.

 The Charities Institute Ireland have put in some amazing work over the past few months in tackling the concerns around advertising restrictions for charities and sporting organisations.

Thankfully, their work did not go unnoticed! Minister of State, James Browne, has listened to their concerns, and during the Dail debate last week has pushed for amendments to be made when the Bill goes to the Seanad. In their efforts to highlight these concerns, the CII have also highlighted their studies to show that there is no causal link between charity fundraising and problem gambling.

“While we have always supported this legislation, which rightly seeks to regulate commercial gambling companies and reduce problem gambling, the unintended consequences of sweeping not-for-profit fundraising campaigns into the advertising ban hours would decimate the income of many organisations and, in some cases, their very viability”, Charities Institute Ireland.

The Gambling Bill at its core is a public health measure aimed at protecting Irish citizens from gambling harm, including younger people and those more vulnerable in our communities.  

Speaking on the issue, Minister of State James Brown adds, “The Government recognises and appreciates the hard work of, and services provided by, not-for-profit and voluntary organisations, including the many charitable organisations in this country. In that regard, the Bill provides for a new type of licence that permits gaming, betting and lottery activities for fundraising for charitable or philanthropic purposes, including charities, sporting organisations and local sports clubs”.

 The Charities Institute Ireland have said, “We intend to continue our efforts as the Bill travels to the Seanad in the coming weeks to ensure that the proposed amendments incorporate the necessary changes to protect fundraising.  We’ll keep members updated.”