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World News

Facebook lifts restrictions on Catholic charity

by Alex Collett

A Catholic charity says it's delighted that Facebook has suddenly lifted restrictions imposed against its work.

Charity, Aid to the Church in Need, had been running a campaign on the site calling on the UK government and UN to help Christian and other minority faith women suffering sexual violence.

But two months ago, the social media giant banned the outreach.

The charity says the ban cost the campaign thousands of signatures of support and that as the petition has now been handed in to the government, it is too late for it to resume.

John Newton from the charity told Premier: “It’s been two months that we have been battling to try and get these restrictions lifted, with no idea why they were placed on us.

“Absolutely no idea what we were doing wrong, almost two months of asking Facebook to do something about this and to tell us why they brought the restrictions on.

“Yes we are delighted that they have finally been lifted.

“It’s been a complete merry go round, we still have no idea why they banned us, we still have no idea why they placed the restrictions and we had no idea what on earth what was going on in Facebook’s mind during any part of the process.

“After we saw the restraints put in place, the average number of new signatures every day, fell to just 38, more than 350 less signatures every day, so in our minds there’s no question, the Facebook restrictions had a major impact on our campaign.”

In a statement to Premier in December, Facebook, which is now known as Meta, said payment issues were the cause of the restriction, but Aid to the Church in Need refutes this and said it had provided evidence to show its account was not in arrears. 

Premier has approached Facebook for comment on why it has now lifted the restrictions.

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