February/March 2014: Charity Campaigning

“I CAN’T overstate how complex the law will now be. It’s going to be wonderful for lawyers. Even in the House of Lords where we gave it some serious attention there were still people who misinterpreted it. It is going to be a singularly difficult job to both interpret the law correctly and to apply it correctly.”

These are the words of Lord Phillips of Sudbury, speaking to Charity Times,
about the Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union
Administration Bill — commonly known as the Lobbying Bill or the Gagging
Bill — which on 30 January received Royal Assent.

Lord Philips has not been the only person to criticise the legislation. Others have described it as “rushed”, “ill-thought through” and, as one Peer stated during a House of Lords debate “the worst piece of legislation ever seen”. For charities and
pressure groups it is deemed particularly detrimental...

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