The Revised Governance Code For The Community, Voluntary And Charity Sector

A revised version of the Governance Code for Community, Voluntary and Charitable Organisations was published on 27th October, 2016.

The Code is principles-based and is adopted on a “comply-or-explain” basis. It comprises a set of recommended practices for the boards of community, voluntary and charitable organisations.

In late 2015 the Governance Code Working Group (GCWG) undertook a review of the Code to determine if it can be improved. After a widespread consultation that review is now complete and the revised Code has been published here

In summary the Review found that:

  • The Code’s adoption journey requires a determined commitment and ownership by a board and takes a minimum of two years to complete.
  • The majority of adopters interpreted the recommended practices to be rules with a minority seeing them as principles and practices to help a board set and oversee the achievement of their vision and objectives.
  • Boards should be held to account for the veracity of their comply-or-explain declarations
  • These declarations should be open to verification and ratings by their stakeholders.
  • Calls for the Code to be turned into mandatory rules should be resisted as that will only reduce governance into box-ticking compliance by board members with little affinity for the rules.
  • Good governance requires a board to consciously align the organisation’s culture and values with its strategy to ensure it achieves its objectives in an ethical manner.
  • The Code’s five principles and their recommended practices have proven to be very workable and as valid today as they were in 2012.

How Can CLS Help

We can advise on how to implement the Code and to adopt a governance manual and amend the constitution to reflect the provisions of the Code. For more information contact one of our Co Sec Team on 059 9186776 or

Please Note:

Our CLS Insights aims to bring you practical information and news on Company Law and Company Secretarial. We cover the topics that matter to your business and give practical tips and also the benefit our experiences. Please remember this article is a guide and legal advice should always be obtained. If you have any queries please contact one of the team and we would be happy to help.

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