Working with RSLs to restore confidence

Working with RSLs to restore confidence​

The ACNC is working with several RSL charities to rectify serious governance failures and to restore confidence.

ACNC commissioner Gary Johns said that the commission’s own investigations and the Bergin inquiry had detailed serious governance and accountability issues.  The ACNC provided information to the inquiry.

‘Unfortunately, poor governance practices and misconduct have been far too common in the past, and this has damaged the reputation of one of Australia’s most well-known charities,’ Dr Johns said.

‘The RSLs must now improve their governance and accountability to regain trust and ensure our veterans and their families are getting the best possible support and care.’

Dr Johns said: ‘In August 2017 we completed an investigation into RSL SA, which resulted in the charity entering into a compliance agreement with the ACNC.  We have opened investigations into both RSL NSW and RSL LifeCare, and we will progress these now that the Bergin inquiry has published its findings.  We are issuing a direction to RSL National after our investigation found a number of governance failures.’

The ACNC’s compliance powers include providing regulatory advice, enforceable undertakings, directions, suspending or removing board members, and, ultimately, revoking charity status. Revocation of charity status removes an organisation’s entitlement to commonwealth charity tax concessions.