Christian ethical investment body expands work and becomes charity

By staff writers
January 11, 2011

The Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility (ECCR), a church-based research and advocacy group, announced today (11 January) that they have become a registered charity.

ECCR completed registration with the Charity Commission for England and Wales at the end of 2010. It now hopes to secure and extend its work by being able to access a wider range of grants and Gift Aided donations.

An investor coalition and membership organisation founded in 1989, ECCR’s mission is to promote economic justice, human rights and environmental sustainability. It works through research-based dialogue with companies, faith-based and responsible investors and others on the impacts of business on society and the natural world.

ECCR’s Chair, Lee Coates, who has been involved with the organisation for many years, welcomed charity registration.

“After 21 years of advocating higher standards of corporate and investor responsibility, I am heartened that ECCR continues to grow and develop,” said Coates, “Charitable status will help us build on our past achievements and take our work forward”.

ECCR’s 80-plus corporate members control and advise on more than £17.5 billion of invested assets.

Member denominations and church bodies include the Baptist Union, the Church of Scotland, the Church in Wales, the Industrial Mission Association, the Methodist Church and its Central Finance Board, the Missionary Society of St Columba, Pax Christi, the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), St Patrick’s Missionary Society, the Society of Jesus, the Student Christian Movement, the United Reformed Church, and USPG: Anglicans in World Mission.

Financial services members of ECCR include Cazenove Capital Management, CCLA Investment Management, Co-operative Financial Services, Ethical Investors, Rathbone Greenbank and Triodos Bank.

Campaigning organisations such as Christian Aid, Fair Pensions, Traidcraft and Trócaire (Ireland) are also ECCR members. Current and recent funding partners include CAFOD, Cordaid (Netherlands), the EIRIS Foundation, the Polden Puckham Charitable Foundation, the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust and the Souter Charitable Trust.

ECCR, which also has individual members, is currently working on the social and environmental impacts of the oil industry in the Niger Delta, the trade in Israeli settlements goods, mining and human rights, and risks associated with deep-water oil drilling and the Canadian oil sands. It will publish a new report on the banking sector in March 2011.

“New members and supporters are always welcome,” said ECCR’s Co-ordinator Miles Litvinoff.


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