(BBC) The Refugee and Migrant Justice, a legal charity serving immigrants seeking asylum in the UK, might be forced to close if the government continues to delay what the charity says are owed payments. The reason for this sudden financial crisis is rooted in new laws designed to speed up the asylum process. Bills are left unpaid until cases are finalized, but RMJ lacks necessary assets to acquire loans. If the charity does close, some 10,000 people will be left without legal aid, including 900 children and many victims of human trafficking.
(The Washington Post) Donating to a charity via text message is temptingly easy, but it does come with some noteworthy setbacks. For one thing, companies often put monthly limitations on texting, so if a person wants to give a larger donation, the best bet is writing a check. To give through a text, customers simply text a word to the charity’s number, and the phone company then pays a set amount to the charity. Delivery of the money, however, can take as long as 30-60 days. Moreover, the Washington Post and Federal Trade Commission advise potential charitable texters to verify the legitimacy of a charity by using a watchdog website, such as Charity Watch. Texters should also give directly to the charity instead of a group that claims to support the charity. Despite all negative factors, the results of texting donations can be massive: the Red Cross’s Haiti Relief and Development Fund raised a whopping $32 million within a month of the earthquake.
(BBC) British International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell insists that taxpayers should be informed about the country’s £7.3 billion international aid budget, and he suggests a watchdog to help solidify detailed reports. In his first speech as Britain’s International Development Secretary, Mr. Mitchell promised, “We will never maintain public support among hard pressed taxpayers for this vital and large programme unless we can demonstrate independently that when we spend £1 on development we are actually getting 100 pence of value.” Critics argue that creating a watchdog will promote excess bureaucracy, but Mr. Mitchell assured the public that will not happen: “We’re going to be very careful indeed that we don’t introduce a whole tier of new bureaucracy but that we get what we require, which is confidence among taxpayers through this independence, that the money is really being well spent, while also learning the lessons through this independent evaluation about what works and doesn’t work in development.”