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Charity Law Seminars

In July and August 2012 the Australian Council of Social Service led a series of seminars to brief charities and not-for-profit organisations about regulatory reforms underway in our sector. The seminars provided an opportunity for community organisations to hear the latest news on:

  • the establishment of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission and what it means for organisations;
  • the objectives of a modernised definition of charity; and
  • next steps towards these reforms and how organisations could stay involved.

We are pleased to provide resources from these seminars, including videos and powerpoint presentations from the sessions on 24 July in Melbourne and 10 August in Sydney.

ACOSS acknowledges the National Australia Bank without whose support these events and resources would not have been made available.

The establishment of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission and what it means for organisations

Summary

Tessa Boyd-Caine, Deputy CEO, Australian Council of Social Service: Presentation one sets out the origins of the reform to establish a national charities regulator; the process and policy developments that have taken place towards this reform; and the current status of the legislation before Parliament. It concludes with a discussion of what sector organisations should be aware of and how they can engage with the final steps of legislation to the opening of the ACNC.

Susan Pascoe, Commissioner Designate, Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission: This presentation sets out how the ACNC will perform its functions once it is open; and what charities and NFPs will need to do once it opens its doors. The presentation goes through the processes of regulation and includes a demonstration of the web functionality that will support the ACNC’s Object of improving publicly available information about charities.

Presentation slides

Download the slides from this session's presentations:

The definition of Charity

Summary

Esther Abram, Executive Officer, Changemakers Australia: Using a project Changemakers ran with philanthropists, this presentation talks about the importance of the definition of charity for supporting access to non-government sources of funding, particularly from philanthropic funds. It explores the history of how the definition of charity has been understood in Australia, the development of policy particularly towards a statutory definition of charity, and the interaction between the definition of charity and current reforms including the Australian Charities and NFP Commission and reforms to the tax treatment of the sector.

Tessa Boyd-Caine, Deputy CEO, Australian Council of Social Service: Following on from Esther Abram, this presentation examines the status and current debates around a statutory definition of charity; the challenges for the sector as well as government policy-makers; and the next steps towards the completion of this reform.

Presentation Slides

Download the slides from this session's presentations: