Valaura, Kimberley Road, Greystones, Co. Wicklow
The following letter was issued in November 2006 by Friends Trusts (Eire) Ltd. to all Preparative Meetings, Monthly Meetings and Quarterly Meetings in RoI with a copy to all bodies for whom Friends Trusts (Eire) Ltd. acts as Trustee. It was recently agreed to have this letter printed in The Friendly Word and published on the Quaker website to draw Friends attention to in particular the contents of paragraph 2.
The Directors of Friends Trusts (Eire) Ltd. (FTE) agreed that a letter should be sent to all Meetings and to each body for which FTE hold property or investments to remind them of the role of FTE. FTE only acts as a Nominee and/or bare trustee. Responsibility for management of investments or real estate belonging to any Meeting, fund or committee rests with that body and its advisors. Please consider Chapter 18 from Organisation and Christian Discipline, Trusteeship of Property and Securities.
In its role as Trustee, FTE would like to remind you of the responsibilities undertaken by Friends who are appointed to manage funds and other assets on behalf of Meetings or committees. It is important to ensure that appropriate procedures and systems are in place to support and safeguard Friends who take on such roles, which can be onerous and challenging. Your bank should be able to advise on appropriate best practices. For example cheques should require two signatures, bank statements could be checked by more than one Friend, duties and responsibilities should be reviewed from time to time. Such practices are designed to protect officers and members by building in checks against inevitable human error or deliberate misuse. We should not be complacent in this area, we are aware that Friends in North Somerset and Wiltshire Monthly Meeting recently experienced the trauma of a betrayal of trust involving a substantial theft of funds.
FTE would also like to take this opportunity to remind Friends of the legal requirement to adhere to the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003. You may find it useful to obtain a copy of A Guide for Data Controllers which is available from the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner (Tel: 01 8748544) or can be downloaded from http://www.dataprotection.ie.
Susanna M. Murdoch, Secretary, FTE
Directors: D.B.R. Poole (Chairman), P.R. Jacob, W.F. Bell, E.G.B. Clibborn, J.G. Douglas, S.M. Murdoch, D.A. Pim, B.S. Pim,, B.S.W. Little, R.H. Johnson.
Secretary: S.M. Murdoch.
Charity Number: CHY4458
Registered in Dublin No 10092; Registered Office: Quaker House, Stocking Lane, Dublin 16.