DeSantis says GoFundMe Handling of Canada’s protest campaign is a ‘fraud’

  • GoFundMe has closed a fundraiser for a Canadian protest against vaccination mandates for cross-border truckers.
  • GoFundMe said Friday it would work with organizers to redistribute the funds to other charities.
  • Florida Governor Ron DeSantis called the plan a “fraud”, saying he would investigate “deceptive practices”.

Governor Ron DeSantis said he would work with Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody to investigate GoFundMe for ‘deceptive practices’ after the company said it would send leftover funds from the ‘Freedom Convoy’ campaign to charities chosen by the organisers.

On Friday, the platform blocked $10 million in donations for the Canadian truck drivers’ vaccine protest. Protests began last weekend over mandates that truckers working across the Canada-US border be vaccinated.

In a statement, GoFundMe said $1 million was released earlier this week and fundraiser organizers said the funds would be used for people traveling to Ottawa to participate in peaceful protests. .

“Given this evolving situation, no further funds will be distributed directly to Freedom Convoy organizers – we will work with organizers to send any remaining funds to credible and established charities chosen by Freedom Convoy 2022 organizers. and verified by GoFundMe,” the platform said.

Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloly said The Washington Post Saturday that there were a thousand vehicles, around 5,000 protesters and at least 300 counter-protesters in the city.

“It’s a seat,” Sloly told the Post. “It’s something that’s different in our democracy than anything I’ve ever experienced in my life.”

DeSantis on Saturday morning noted, “It’s a fraud for @gofundme to requisition $9 million in donations sent to support truckers and donate to causes of their choice. »

The governor called on donors to get their money back: “These donors should be reimbursed,” he said.

However, his remarks came after GoFundMe previously announced that it had changed its approach and would instead send a refund to all donors.

“We will automatically refund all contributions directly – donors do not need to submit a request,” the platform said in a statement. declaration.

DeSantis’ office and GoFundMe did not immediately respond to Insider’s email requests for comment.

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