January 31, 2008 View all publications Friends of the Earth commentary PDF 86.80k | Download Now Friends of the Earth is concerned that organizations such as ours will not qualify for charitable status under the new Charities Bill, currently passing through the Oireachtas, due to the proposed definition of excluded bodies. We welcome the regulatory framework the Bill provides for the work of NGOs and believe we belong under its umbrella. Moreover, while we have doubled our income from public donations in each of the last three years, the absence of tax relief on donations to Friends of the Earth is a real inhibitor for many prospective supporters, an inhibition charitable status would remove. Therefore we are deeply concerned that we may be regarded as an excluded body under Section 2 on the Bill. We share the position of the Wheel, in their analysis of the bill, that line 25 on page 9 should be amended to remove the word 'cause' so that organizations that promote "political causes" are not automatically excluded.