SCT ignores Shetlanders (Peter Hamilton)

The campaign for Democracy for Shetland’s Charitable Trust is to press ahead with its plans to hold a public meeting in response to decisions taken yesterday by the trust. The decisions show the trust to be ignoring the views of the council, OSCR (the charities watchdog) and the people of Shetland.

Yesterday afternoon’s meeting of Shetland Charitable Trust saw the appointee trustees voting to take control of the trust from June next year. This ignores the response provided by Shetland Islands Council which has plainly stated it does not wish to send councillor-trustees to the trust but instead wants to see trustees directly elected by the people of Shetland in a majority on the trust.

The meeting also saw them voting to be able to change the trust deed in future without clearing changes with the Office of the Scottish Charities Regulator. Taking that power at this time is remarkable given that their own risk assessments show their governance structure is shaky and their poor reputation is worsening.

The meeting also saw trustees voting on their spending priorities without having first consulted with the people of Shetland on these. These decisions all show Shetland Charitable Trust to be ignoring the public advice given by the chief executive of Scotland’s charity watchdog that the trust needs to “take into account the views of their beneficiaries and the reputation of their charity”.

Democracy for Shetland’s Charitable Trust invites all who are concerned about the direction the trust is heading in to attend a public meeting  on Saturday 24th September at 10am in Islesburgh Community Centre to consider how to respond.

Peter Hamilton
Spokesman, Democracy for Shetland Charitable Trust


Add Your Comment
  • Michael Garriock

    • September 16th, 2016 16:12

    ….and this is supposed to be something new? Why would the SCT change the habits of a lifetime and start listening to anyone else apart from themselves now?

    Face it, unless there’s bomb put under them, the SCT does not exist for the average Shetlander, nor has it existed for quite some time. The money is long gone out of their reach and any semblance of their control, folk either need to accept that as fact, or provide the necessary bomb to change things.

    While it very admirable to talk about it, raise petitions, hold meetings and whatnot. Its totally wasted effort at this stage, the only options left to anyone now are action, or doff your cap and say “SCT RIP”, prolonging its deathbed throes as is happening at the moment is neither pretty nor of benefit.

  • Steven Jarmson

    • October 2nd, 2016 11:49

    Is it not a bit late for the Council to be moaning about the governance of the Charitable Trust?
    As soon as the SIC decided NOT to have directly elected trustees they lost any argument along the lines of governance.
    I don’t see why the SIC don’t establish a new trust to channel the oil money into.
    Sullom Voe, by my undestanding, pay 1p per barrel that goes through the place.
    The SCT gets that money.
    To my knowledge, I could do easily be wrong, but, there’s no rule that say the SCT gets that money in perpetuity. Even if there is, I’m quite sure the rules could be changed so that it doesn’t have any entitlement to all of Shetlands oil money.
    The SCT is out of all control, especially the control of this it is meant to serve, so we should cut its funding and establish a new, democratically elected trust to administer all future monies for he benefit of the people of Shetland, not just the private interests of a few, already wealthy, people.

  • Peter Hamilton

    • October 2nd, 2016 20:36

    The council is right to step back. The money SCT holds is to do extra stuff the council isn’t obliged to do. They need to focus on what they have to do. The decision for what the extra stuff should be needs to be up taken by others. The appointee trustees feel they can take those decisions for us but we haven’t asked them to. They have taken away control of something very precious to Shetland. Our elected representatives on the council said we should have a majority of elected trustees but they have been totally ignored. SCT are a law into themselves.


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