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Charities Breakfast Briefing: An introduction to serious incidents

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Charities Breakfast Briefing: An introduction to serious incidents

October 16 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am

This Series will consist of three sessions which will explore serious incidents within charities, how and why they occur and the preventative steps that can be taken.

Serious incidents are reportable to the Charity Commission and cover a range of issues where there is a harm (or risk of harm) to the beneficiaries, staff, volunteers as well as loss of the charity’s assets, damage to property or harm to the charity’s reputation. Serious incidents can happen by mistakes made by trustees, employees, or volunteers or because of external or unforeseen factors.

The Charity Commission expects trustees to self-report and take steps to mitigate and prevent serious incidents and this series will consider what serious incidents look like, how to mitigate them and what governance issues can lead to serious incidents. The series will then look at averting incidents from a governance perspective, how compliance with data protection laws can prevent serious incidents from occurring and positively focus on what steps that can be taken in relation to avoiding serious incidents arising from an employment law perspective.

PART ONE: An introduction to serious incidents and how ignoring common governance issues may lead to serious incidents

Charity trustees are under a duty to self-report any serious incidents to the Charity Commission.

Charity Commission guidance is very useful in helping trustees determine whether a serious incident has occurred, but it can sometimes be difficult for trustees to determine whether a serious incident in their charity has arisen due to the unique nature of charities and their operations. This session will look at what they are, when they need reporting and what the Charity Commission’s role is when a serious incident has occurred. It will also consider how prudent trustees can take simple steps to avoid common pitfalls.

The session will be led by Gerry Morrison and Harriet Wheeldon who have both had first-hand experience in liaising with the Charity Commission where serious incidents have been reported and helping trustees navigate this process.

Meet the speakers

Gerry Morrison

Gerry specialises exclusively in charity law and has significant experience of advising charities and not-for-profit organisations. She is passionate about the charity and voluntary sector and enjoys engaging with charity trustees and CEOs to help them to fully discharge their legal duties and to fulfil their organisation’s charitable purposes.

Gerry Morrison
Harriet Wheeldon

Harriet specialises in charity law advising a variety of organisations in respect of their governance and regulation. She is very experienced in delivering trustee training to charity trustees and contributes to workshops and seminars to promote best practice in governance alongside Gerry Morrison at a range of sector conferences.

Harriet Wheeldon