Local authorities - Site Management Agreements

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In the absence of legislation applying to direct debit forms of fundraising, we work with local authorities and Business Improvement Districts (BIDS) to establish co-regulatory agreements. These Site Management Agreements (SMA) set controls on where and when fundraising can take place.

We make sure our members stick to the terms of the SMA through a programme of spot checks, mystery shopping and co-regulation with our council partners. Breaches of the conditions of the SMA attract penalty points under our penalties and sanctions regime.

Through these agreements, we are aiming to balance the duty of charities to ask the public for support with the right of the public not to be put under undue pressure to give.

How an SMA Works

A typical Site Management Agreement will specify:

The Compliance Directorate then runs a 4 weekly site diary, ensuring that only one charity operates on the site at any one time and that the authority has advance notice of who this will be. Throughout the time that a charity is onsite, they are expected to abide by both the terms of the agreement and the behaviours set out in the Chartered Institute of Fundraising Compliance Rule Book Street Fundraising (regular giving) and may be subject to mystery shopping.

How we negotiate an SMA:

We have a basic SMA template, but the final agreement is the result of negotiations between the Chartered Institute, the local authority/BID and the Chartered Institute's member charities to tailor the SMA to the specific requirements of the area.

The Chartered Institute will visit the council to discuss requirements and to conduct a ‘site walk’ to identify suitable fundraising locations, taking account of pedestrian flow, potential pinch points, street furniture, event spaces etc.

You can take a look at the existing SMAs that we have with councils for a guide as to what is contained in most of our agreements here.

Does my local authority need an SMA?

You should consider working with the Chartered Institute's Compliance Directorate to draw up a Site Management Agreement if:

SMAs are suitable for locations administered by:

If you think you would benefit from an agreement, please complete the online form.

I cannot recommend having a SMA enough, and would like to recommend the Chartered Institute to all authorities, they are extremely professional and having an SMA is a real benefit to our communities.


Nigel Marston, Licensing Manager at South Somerset District Council

Benefits of a Site Management Agreement

With an SMA in place, the Chartered Institute will at no cost to the local authority:

In our last annual survey of local authorities, approximately 90 per cent of those with an agreement said they would recommend it to others.


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