Bournemouth MP writes to Charity Commission over 'highly political' Oxfam advert (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Bournemouth MP writes to Charity Commission over 'highly political' Oxfam advert
BOURNEMOUTH MP Conor Burns has written to the chairman of the Charity Commission over advertising used by Oxfam.
Mr Burns, who represents Bournemouth West, said the campaign, which attacks the Government’s austerity measures, was “highly political”.
The controversy centres on a film poster-style picture issued on Twitter by the charity, which shows a raging sea under the slogan: “The perfect storm... starring zero hours contracts, high prices, benefits cuts, unemployment, childcare costs.”
Mr Burns said: “Many people who support Oxfam will be shocked and saddened by this highly political campaigning in domestic British politics.
“Most of us operated under the illusion that Oxfam’s focus was on the relief of poverty and famine overseas. I cannot see how using funds donated to charity to campaign politically can be in accord with Oxfam’s charitable status.
“For that reason I have asked the Chairman of the Charity Commission to investigate Oxfam as a matter of urgency.”
Ben Phillips, Oxfam Campaigns and Policy Director, said: “Oxfam is a resolutely non-party political organisation - we have a duty to draw attention to the hardship suffered by poor people we work with in the UK.
“Fighting poverty should not be a party political issue - successive governments have presided over a tide of rising inequality and created a situation where food banks and other providers provided 20 million meals last year to people who could not afford to feed themselves.
“This is an unacceptable situation in one of the world’s largest economies and politicians of all stripes have a responsibility to tackle it.”
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