For anyone who – like myself – is tired of the Iona Institute using their charity status as a pretext to avoid tax on their political activities, here’s a quick 3-step process that will allow you to voice your concern.
1. Head over to https://www.charitiesregulatoryauthority.ie/Website/CRA/CRAweb.nsf/frmCharHelpdesk?OpenForm
2. Enter the Iona Institute’s charity number, 17347 (with thanks to Bock the Robber, to clarify this is their CHY number. Their charity reg number is 20064365)
3. Let the charity regulator know how you feel about a political lobbying group enjoying charity status. Here’s what I wrote, feel free to copy and paste or write your own:
“To whom it may concern,
I would like to formally request an investigation of the current charity status of Lolek Ltd, more commonly known as the Iona Institute. Lolek’s charity status is based on their supposed “furthering of a religion”, however on an almost daily basis their employees are campaigning for a no vote in the upcoming referendum on an entirely legal matter. The interference in politics is outside the terms of their memorandum and articles of association, which state their aims as
“The advancement and promotion of the Christian religion, its social and moral values, and the doing of all such other things as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of that object.”
I am concerned that their actual activities as a political lobbying group mean that they are illegally using their charity status to avoid paying tax, effectively meaning that their political lobbying is being subsidised by the tax payer.
I look forward to your response.