Breast cancer nonprofit ordered to stop raising money in Michiga - WNEM TV 5

Breast cancer nonprofit ordered to stop raising money in Michigan

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A breast cancer nonprofit organization has been ordered to stop raising money in Michigan after the state’s attorney general said they falsely solicited funds for research.

Attorney General Bill Schuette announced the Cease and Desist Order against Breast Cancer Outreach Foundation, Inc. on Friday. The Florida nonprofit corporation is accused of false solicitation and diversion of funds.

Investigators said the foundation raised $1,425,201 in 2015, including $36,372 from more than 2,000 pledges by Michigan residents.

It solicited for the donations by calling and emailing people. They told them the money raised would be used to breast cancer research grants in support of a breast cancer vaccine.

However, officials found the foundation did not use the funds raised for breast cancer research. They made no grants that year, instead Schuette said the foundation used $1.3 million for its professional fundraisers and $75,000 for its president’s salary.

“I won’t tolerate deceptive fundraising. If a charity tells you it’s raising money for a specific purpose, it must use the money raised for that purpose,” said Schuette. “Donors should also be on guard against these deceptive practices. Remember: research the charity before you give."

The investigation into the Breast Cancer Outreach Foundation began after it was discovered the nonprofit used Corporations for Character for some its fundraising.

The professional fundraiser corporation was investigated by the department in 2016 which resulted in a settlement and four-year ban in Michigan.

The president of Breast Cancer Outreach Foundation is also the president of another charitable organization, Help the Vets, Inc., that solicits in Michigan.

The foundation has been in operation since July 2014.  

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