SCVO is to investigate Arms-Length External Organisations (ALEOS) in the belief that they do not deserve to have charitable status and should not be registered as charities.
ALEOS were set up by councils across the country to take on roles previously the responsibility of the council. In Glasgow there are 10 of these, including organisations such as Cordia, which has taken over many of the council’s care services and Glasgow Life, which now delivers culture and leisure services in the city. Not all ALEOs are charities, but the charitable status of some means that they can compete with “genuine” charities for funding, something that should not be happening, according to SCVO, given that they are so closely involved with councils. According to John Downie, Director of Public Affairs at SCVO, “They’re just another extension of the local authority.”
The research findings will be submitted in a report to the Scottish Government when complete. The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator has said that it will work with charities and stakeholders to address status and governance issues in ALEOs as a priority over the coming year.
Source: Civil Society