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Public Policy

“[P]olitics mixes with everything. It is a reality we all experience in different sorts of ways,
either as pernicious or benevolent.”

- Archbishop Desmond Tutu to AFP 2010 Int'l Conference, Baltimore MD

Public Policy News and Developments

As the largest association of philanthropic fundraisers, AFP seeks to educate the public about the fundraising profession and the importance of philanthropy, and protect the interests of donors, fundraisers and charities related to laws and regulations about giving, volunteering and nonprofit operations in the U.S., Canada, and abroad.

April 8, 2015: Free IRS Webinar on Charities and Unrelated Business Income Tax
On April 8, the Internal Revenue Service will be holding a free webinar: Unrelated Business Income Tax and Tax-Exempt Organizations.

Charitable Giving Coalition Sends Letter to Rep. Paul Ryan
(Sept. 24, 2014) The Charitable Giving Coalition, chaired by AFP, recently sent a letter to Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.), chair of the Budget Committee and key player on tax reform, thanking him for his comments on the unique nature of the charitable deduction and the potential negative impact of Rep. Dave Camp's proposed tax reform plan on giving.

Prime Minister Of Canada Recognizes National Volunteer Week
(Apr. 7, 2014) National Volunteer Week is April 6–12 this year, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper marked the occasion with comments about the importance of philanthropy and volunteering. Learn more.

AFP Advocacy

To better serve the interests and livelihood of AFP members and the philanthropic community, AFP works hard to continually advance and enhance its public policy outreach and advocacy efforts. We will be vigilant in highlighting new and pending legislative efforts in the U.S., Canada, and worldwide that could potentially impact the profession and charity, and what you can do to help safeguard the continuing vitality of philanthopy (including letter-writing campaigns, lobbying efforts, and more).

Take Action: Urge Your House Member of Congress to Pass Legislation That Includes a Permanent Extension of the IRA Rollover Provision
(Dec. 9, 2014) The U.S. House plans to place the Supporting America’s Charities Act (H.R. 5806) on the suspension calendar (a fast-track means of passing legislation) that would permanently extend the following three charitable provisions: the IRA Rollover provision; the deduction for gifts food inventory; and the deduction for conservation easement contributions. In order for this bundle to pass the House, 50-65 Democrats are needed to vote in favor of the bill. Time is of the essence as we've heard that a House vote could come as early as this week.

Canada Anti-Spam Legislation Talking Points in English and French
(Aug. 20, 2014) Canada’s new (and complicated) Anti-Spam Legislation, which came into force on July 1, applies to commercial electronic messages that are either sent from, or accessed on, a computer system in Canada. AFP urges you to contact members of Parliament and Senators to exempt electronic communications sent by, or on behalf of, registered charities, or at least provide clear and consistent interpretations for registered charities. To help in these efforts, we’ve armed you with talking points in English and French

The Long (and Continuing) Travels of the Charitable IRA Rollover
(June 3, 2014) The Charitable IRA Rollover was approved last week by the House Ways and Means Committee as part of a package of tax extenders, and is now headed to the full House for a vote. But the journey for the now expired provision is far from over. Using these bullet points, we urge you to contact your representatives to support the IRA Charitable Rollover.

Government Relations Tool Kit: If You Build It They Will Come
(Apr. 7, 2014) The newest AFP Canada toolkit walks you through the process of working with government officials on behalf of your charity and/or the issue it represents. Now, the question is, are you ready to start using the information to further GR public policy relevant to the nonprofit sector?

AFP Public Awareness Communications Tool Kit Available for Canada Members
When is the best time to make a call to a government official? What is the role of a Minister of State? How do you gain the respect of a parliamentarian?  Find these answers and more in the new Public Awareness Communications tool kit, now available to all AFP Canada members.
Download English | Download French

AFP Chapter Advocacy FAQ Document Now Available!
With the guidance and input of the AFP U.S. Government Relations Committee, AFP has produced a one-page Chapter Advocacy FAQ document. Please distribute it to your chapter leaders and members. It is an invaluable tool for chapters to launch or enhance their advocacy and lobbying efforts.

AFP PAC
AFP’s public policy efforts are greatly enhanced by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Political Action Committee (AFP PAC).  The AFP PAC is the only political action committee that focuses on fundraising and charitable giving.  But the AFP PAC can only function with YOUR SUPPORT! AFP members who are U.S. citizens who wish to support the AFP PAC can learn more and make a contribution by clicking here (login required).

Canada Public Policy Issues

Parliament Hill Day Builds Trust, Sets Stage for Future Advocacy
(May 20, 2015) Last Thursday, May 14, 2015, more than 35 representatives from a variety of nonprofit organizations and associations, including AFP, participated in the first Hill Day in Ottawa to educate Parliament about the importance of Canada’s charitable sector and the impact it has upon society.

Canada: Federal Budget Includes Key Giving, Charity Provisions Pushed by Charities, Fundraisers
(April 29, 2015) AFP is pleased to see one of its key legislative priorities—a capital gains tax exemption for gifts of private shares and real estate—included in the 2015 federal budget. Learn more.

Parliament Hill Day Planned for May
(Feb. 10, 2014) A coalition of charities and associations, including AFP, is planning to hold a lobbying day on Parliament Hill in mid-May to share key messages about fundraising and the voluntary sector with legislators during this important election year.

U.S. Public Policy Issues

AFP Submits Comments to Senate on Tax Reform, Charitable Incentives
(April 22, 2015) AFP has submitted comments to the Individual Income Tax and Business Income Tax Working Groups of the Senate Finance Committee, calling on the Senate to keep the charitable deduction in its current form and look for other incentives to encourage charitable giving, including the IRA Rollover Provision.

Tax Reform Efforts Starting in Congress
(Jan. 21, 2015) With limited time to act before the 2016 Presidential election season kicks into gear, Congress has begun its efforts to address comprehensive tax reform, while the Charitable Giving Coalition has sent a letter to new members of Congress calling for greater incentives for giving.

IRA Rollover Approved by Congress, Heads to White House For Signing
(Dec. 17, 2014) With the White House threatening a veto of a bill to make the IRA Charitable Rollover and other provisions permanent, Congress turns to a one-year extenders package.

International News and Information

Position Paper: Face-to-Face Fundraising Guidelines (Canada)
These guidelines represent voluntary principles that apply to charitable organizations, non-governmental organizations, paid fundraisers and relevant third parties who utilize face-to-face fundraising as part of their fundraising activities.

Public Policy Update Newsletter

Emailed to subscribers twice a year, the AFP Public Policy Update newsletter brings you the latest legislative and political developments affecting the fundraising and philanthropic communties.

(registered user account required)






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