DONATION Scams Abuse the Reputation of Fire and Police

Tuesday, August 7th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

During the summer months, many people have reported getting calls from someone trying to collect money for a police or firefighting organization. While some are legitimate, many are not.

Because police and firefighters who often put their lives on the line to protect us, people are often generous when asked to donate.

However, the Better Business Bureau warns that some of these people are collecting money that will never benefit any type of police or fire organization.

How can you tell? By taking certain steps and asking certain questions.

  1. First - Don't give cash, write a check and don't give in to pressure to donate on the spot.
  2. Don't believe promises that if you do give money, you'll get special treatment from police and's not true.
  3. Find out if the money will benefit your local police or fire department.
  4. Ask where the money will go, which programs will get it.
  5. Find out about the organization's tax exempt status and if any of the donation is deductible.
  6. The best way to get your questions answered is to ask the caller to send you written information. If they won't or can't send you anything, that's a red flag...and you should turn them down.

    For more information, call Better Business Bureau in Tulsa at 492-1266.

    If you have a question for ask consumer six, call the tipline at 732-6111 or send an e-mail to