I am writing to provide you with an update on our work on charities here in England & Wales linked to Jehovah’s Witnesses. I know that this email will end up in many different parts of the world – I hope that wherever you are, it is as nice and sunny as it is today in London.
First and foremost, a huge thank you to everyone who has come forward. It has been a real privilege to hear from so many of you. We have been struck time and time again by your generosity in sharing your experiences with us. We are also very grateful to those of you who have provided us with documents. I have to say, I did not have high hopes that we would ever be able to track down copies of ‘Our Kingdom Ministry’ from the mid 1970s … I am delighted to have been proved wrong!
We are now finalising the list of case studies of safeguarding, domestic abuse and shunning we plan to share with representatives of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Britain. If we have already interviewed you or if you have already sent us written accounts of what happened to you and your family, then please accept our wholehearted thanks. If you have been thinking of getting in touch but haven’t done so, I would ask you to contact us ASAP and no later than Friday 16 September 2016.
As ever, the outcome we are seeking here is for the charity trustees of the charity to comply with their duties and responsibilities under charity law. I do not know what the outcome is going to be. I am however grateful to so many of you for sending us your careful and thought-provoking analyses of contemporary policies and practices. We read and study everything you send and have noted a very wide range of opinion.
I am cc’ing this email to my colleague Nick Beales, who many of you have now met or have spoken to on the phone. Nick is now going to be your primary point of contact with the Charity Commission; I am sorry to say that this is my last week here before I move on to pastures new at the Home Office, where my role will be co-ordinating the department’s liaison with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse – so it may be that our paths cross at some point in the future?
Please let us know if you would like to be removed from this mailing list; please also let us know if you would like us to signpost you to people and groups who may be able to offer you support.
I has been an honour to work with you. I would like to assure you of my very best wishes.
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