Being Charitable to the Sensible Sentencing Trust
Trust will fight to keep charity status
The Sensible Sentencing Trust says it will not give up its status as a charity without a fight. The trust says its existence is under threat after being told its status as a charitable organisation is likely to be revoked. Charities Commission chief executive Trevor Garrett says organisations whose main focus is political advocacy, are not eligible to be officially recognised as a charity. "The courts have been quite clear that political advocacy is not a charitable purpose. That's why for example a political party can't register as a charity."
Now I don’t like the Sensible Sentencing Trust, I think we can all agree with that right? But I have a big issue with this ruling, Greenpeace are a charity, so are Amnesty International, both seek to change policy and are political advocates and there is no way in hell I would want to see either one stripped of their charity status for attempting to do exactly what the Sensible Sentencing Trust does. You can’t push for an advantage against your opponent that you would never tolerate against your own. Better that there are changes all round that force public disclosure of donations, forget canceling the SST’s charitable status, I don’t care about that, what I care about is who funds the Sensible Sentencing Trust.
It has always been my suspicion that the SST are funded by GEO – the private prison corporate who are anxious to start running prisons in NZ. Overseas private prison companies fuel shrill victims rights groups to create a public discourse that warps hate into social policy.
The Standard touched on these concerns earlier this year
Sensible Sentencing Trust and GEO Group, a deafening silence
Yesterday Tane did an excellent post speculating on links between the Sensible Sentencing Trust and GEO Group. GEO Group derived from the notorious Wackenhut Corrections and it now wants to run privately run and publically funded prisons in NZ. In the US, the GEO Group supports organizations preaching almost exactly the messages as the SST does here.
So Garth, who is funding you?