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News - 7 March 2004
Turning into a bit of a turn off?

Greenpeace stops using Face to Face Charity Workers

One of the best known charities in the world has officially stopped using “chuggers” because of negative reaction from the public. Is this form of charity collecting nearing is sell-by date?

Greenpeace chairman Martyn Day has decided that face-to-face campaigning is having a negative effect on the charity’s image because the tactics of the operators turns off too many people.

In large cities the same members of the public are being asked time and again to donate and this has led to compassion fatigue and outright resentment in some cases. The growing awareness that the face-to-face workers are not actually employed by charities directly but rather by profit making third party agencies has also tempered public opinion about their activity (see earlier stories in knowledge base).

The chairman of Greenpeace is firmly of the opinion that the method of charitable collecting has had its day. Greenpeace was one of the first charities to adopt face-to-face collecting and it is perhaps significant that they have decided to move on to other methods e.g. personalised mail shots and door-to-door.

If charities are beginning to distance themselves from face-to-face activity on the street it will probably be greeted warmly by many businesses in Brighton & Hove. The City Centre Business Forum has negotiated a more rigorous code of practice for street workers in the city including an agreement not to stay in the same position for protracted periods of time and to limit the number of workers in a street at any one time but many businesses are pushing for regulation via the Charities Reform Act. The modified code has been distributed to every business in streets that are popular with charity workers. For more information about the code of practice contact Soozie Campbell on 380040.


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