Charities & Non-Profit Organizations
Articles and Resources
Date Fairness.com Resource Read it at: Sep 15, 2012 Charitable donations benefit telemarketers
QUOTE: Charities should never agree to contracts with telemarketers where they receive only a small percentage of the funds donated through the calls, says Ken Berger, who runs Charity Navigator, the nation’s largest nonprofit watchdog group. “These organizations were created to provide public benefit,” he says. “The fact that the vast majority of money is instead lining the pockets of telemarketers defies the whole reason behind the very creation of these charities.”
Washington Post Apr 24, 2012 Debt Collector Is Faulted for Tough Tactics in Hospitals
QUOTE: Hospital patients waiting in an emergency room or convalescing after surgery are being confronted by an unexpected visitor: a debt collector at bedside. This and other aggressive tactics by one of the nation’s largest collectors of medical debts, Accretive Health, were revealed on Tuesday by the Minnesota attorney general, raising concerns that such practices have become common at hospitals across the country.
New York Times Aug 01, 2011 Somalis Waste Away as Insurgents Block Escape From Famine
QUOTE: The Shabab Islamist insurgent group, which controls much of southern Somalia, is blocking starving people from fleeing the country and setting up a cantonment camp where it is imprisoning displaced people who were trying to escape Shabab territory.
New York Times Apr 06, 2011 Fiesta Bowl’s Lesson: Boards Must Watch for Red Flags
QUOTE: Charitable funds have gone misspent, jobs have been lost, and the reputation of one of college football’s most prominent organizations has been sullied... The ultimate (and often unfair) question in situations like this is, Where was the board?
Chronicle of Philanthropy Apr 30, 2010 How Much to Donate? God Knows
QUOTE: If we’re going to try to set standards that might offer guidance for us all, shouldn’t we look not just at what people earn but what they have? Once you do, it suggests a whole new way of thinking about what to give and a couple of ways to donate higher amounts more easily.
New York Times Apr 23, 2010 With Impact Investing, a Focus on More Than Returns
QUOTE: The very phrase “impact investing” sounds rapacious, but it is an emerging hybrid of philanthropy and private equity....Investors expect at least a return of their capital with an adjustment for inflation and, in many cases, a lot more than that.
New York Times Apr 04, 2010 Charities boosted profits of Erickson retirement communities
QUOTE: His story shows how organizations certified as charities by the Internal Revenue Service -- in effect subsidized by the public -- can be used for private advantage. Today, Baltimore-based Erickson Retirement Communities (ERC) is in bankruptcy court.
Washington Post Dec 25, 2009 Doing Good by Paying Forward (Your Money)
QUOTE: Perhaps the fastest-growing way to act on these altruistic instincts is participating in microfinancing. You take a relatively small amount of money and, through an online marketplace of sorts, give or lend it to a specific person or project whose story moves you. (Not all microfinancing organizations are nonprofits, however, so be aware of the differences.)
New York Times Sep 16, 2009 Panhandling bans hurt some fundraisers
QUOTE: Communities seeking to prevent panhandlers from venturing into streets are stirring controversy with bans that also prevent people from approaching vehicles to ask for charitable donations.
USA TODAY Jul 26, 2009 Reviews prompt suspension of Iraqi jobs program
QUOTE: The top U.S. aid agency has suspended a $644 million Iraq jobs program after two outside reviews raised concerns about misspending, including an inspector general's audit that found evidence of phantom jobs and money siphoned to insurgents.
USA TODAY Jul 15, 2009 Exchange students live American nightmare
QUOTE: Danielle Grijalva, director of the Committee for Safety of Foreign Exchange Students, said she once worked in the industry. The agencies, which she calls unregulated travel agents, can make millions of dollars enticing rich foreigners and lobbying for State Department grants to lure scholarship-eligible students here for a year of study.
CNN (Cable News Network) Jun 15, 2009 A.C.L.U. Report Says Antiterror Fight Undercuts Liberty of Muslim Donors
QUOTE: The fight against terrorism has dealt a harsh blow to Muslim charities and interfered with their donors’ religious freedom, a new report by the American Civil Liberties Union concludes.
New York Times Dec 24, 2008 In Madoff Scandal, Jews Feel an Acute Betrayal
QUOTE: Here is a Jew accused of cheating Jewish organizations trying to help other Jews, they say, and of betraying the trust of Jews and violating the basic tenets of Jewish law. A Jew, they say, who seemed to exemplify the worst anti-Semitic stereotypes of the thieving Jewish banker....In addition to theft, the Torah discusses another kind of stealing, geneivat da’at, the Hebrew term for deception or stealing someone’s mind. “In the rabbinic mind-set, he’s guilty of two sins: one is theft, and the other is deception,” said Burton L. Visotzky, a professor at the Jewish Theological Seminary.
New York Times Dec 09, 2008 Uninsured Put a Strain on Hospitals
QUOTE: As increasing numbers of the unemployed and uninsured turn to the nation’s emergency rooms as a medical last resort, doctors warn that the centers — many already overburdened — could have even more trouble handling the heart attacks, broken bones and other traumas that define their core mission. Even before the recession became evident, many emergency rooms around the country were already overcrowded, with dangerously long waits for some patients...
New York Times Jul 16, 2008 Vision Insurer to Ask Justices to Restore Its Tax Exemption
QUOTE: The country’s largest eye-care insurance program plans to ask the Supreme Court to decide whether the Internal Revenue Service properly revoked its tax exemption in 2003, company executives said Tuesday. The proposed filing, by VSP Vision Care of Rancho Cordova, Calif., highlights a major debate in the nonprofit arena over what activities deserve tax exemption when most nonprofit groups charge fees for services and products to supplement their income from charitable donations.
New York Times May 27, 2008 De-emphasis on Race in Adoption Is Criticized
QUOTE: The report, based on an examination of the law’s impact over a decade, said that minority children adopted into white households face special challenges and that white parents need preparation and training for what might lie ahead. But it found that social workers and state agencies fear litigation and stiff penalties under the law for even discussing race with adopting couples. As a result, families often do not get the counseling they need. It also found that states have ignored an aspect of the law that requires diligent recruitment of black parents.
New York Times May 26, 2008 Exemptions for Charities Face New Challenges
QUOTE: One issue is the growing confusion over what constitutes a charity at a time when nonprofit groups look more like businesses, charging fees and selling products and services to raise money, and state and local governments are under financial pressure because of lower tax revenues.
New York Times May 19, 2008 Mozilla phancies doing a Phorm: Firefox - your friendly data snooper
QUOTE: what's a non-profit web browser doing building in a data-gathering infrastructure? It would be creepy if we discovered say Nokia putting stealth recording equipment into its handsets.
Register Mar 13, 2008 Advertising: When a Corporate Donation Raises Protests
QUOTE: The coalition, which includes the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, several pediatricians and Parents for Ethical Marketing, is asking the hospital to reconsider the decision made in June 2006 to accept the donation [from Abercrombie & Fitch}...“It is troubling that a children’s hospital would name its emergency room after a company that routinely relies on highly sexualized marketing to target teens and preteens,” the members of the coalition wrote...
New York Times Dec 20, 2007 In Charity and Politics, Clinton Donors Overlap
QUOTE: The New York Times has compiled the first comprehensive list of 97 donors who gave or pledged a total of $69 million for the Clinton presidential library in the final years of the Clinton administration. The examination found that while some $1 million contributors were longtime Clinton friends, others were seeking policy changes from the administration. Two pledged $1 million each while they or their companies were under investigation by the Justice Department.
New York Times Dec 18, 2007 Don't get faked out by bogus charities
QUOTE: Con artists are asking for charitable donations through phony Web sites, phishing e-mails and auction listings, preying on people unfamiliar with charity scams and those looking to donate to a good cause.
Bankrate.com Dec 06, 2007 Are big-spending clergy abusing U.S. tax code? Tax exemptions for wealthy media-based ministries lead a senator to ask hard questions.
QUOTE: But church groups and other nonprofits worry that this probe could lead Congress to pass laws that slip into constitutionally protected territory – imposing excessive government oversight on a wide range of churches and other nonprofits.
Christian Science Monitor Nov 27, 2007 Atlanta Hospital Moves to Unburden Itself of Debt
QUOTE: Advocates for patients have warned that the hospital would become less responsive to community needs if it was operated by a less political board. But with few other options and Grady’s fiscal condition worsening, the authority felt it had little choice.
New York Times Nov 24, 2007 Barely Getting by and Facing a Cold Maine Winter
QUOTE: The preoccupation right now is soaring fuel prices: cheaper natural gas is unavailable in this region, and wood heat is often impractical or insufficient. But because of limited federal money, average fuel assistance for the 46,000 low-income Maine families expected to apply will probably decline to $579 this year, from $688 last year, said Jo-Ann Choate of the Maine State Housing Agency.
New York Times Nov 07, 2007 Senator Questioning Ministries on Spending
QUOTE: Senator Charles E. Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, is investigating six prominent evangelistic ministries to determine whether they have illegally used donations to finance opulent lifestyles.
New York Times Nov 04, 2007 The Orphans Who Didn’t Need Saving
QUOTE: But the scandal involving the French charity, Zoé’s Ark, is tangled in an even more complicated web, a modern one of apparently good intentions gone awry and of the perceived exploitation of the suffering of vulnerable people, and a profound cultural misunderstanding.
New York Times Oct 09, 2007 Distribution of Nets Splits Malaria Fighters
QUOTE: Villages like Maendeleo are at the center of a debate that has split malaria fighters: how to distribute mosquito nets.
New York Times Oct 08, 2007 Chess Group Officials Accused of Using Internet to Hurt Rivals
QUOTE: According to the lawsuit, Ms. Polgar and Mr. Truong broke a federal law that prohibits using electronic means to harass or annoy another person. Mr. Sloan is asking for new board elections and punitive damages, among other requests.
New York Times Sep 18, 2007 Prosecutors Say a Charity Aided Terrorists Indirectly
QUOTE: Many groups — lawyers, charities, terrorism experts and many Muslims who feel their charities have been unfairly made targets — have been watching this case carefully, in part because the government has given it such a high profile.
New York Times Sep 06, 2007 Age of Riches: Big Gifts, Tax Breaks and a Debate on Charity
QUOTE: Research shows that less than 10 percent of the money Americans give to charity addresses basic human needs, like sheltering the homeless, feeding the hungry and caring for the indigent sick, and that the wealthiest typically devote an even smaller portion of their giving to such causes than everyone else.
New York Times Aug 09, 2007 Johnson & Johnson Sues Red Cross Over Symbol
QUOTE: The dispute over rights to the symbol erupted to the surface yesterday in federal court in Manhattan, where J.& J. sued the American Red Cross.
New York Times Aug 02, 2007 Top Private Education Lender Cuts Jobs: GAO Report Faults Industry Oversight
QUOTE: EduCap... laid off scores of workers yesterday and is considering shutting its loan business as federal officials investigate whether it has abused its tax-exempt status, according to current and former employees.
Washington Post Jul 25, 2007 Case Against Islamic Charity Opens: Now-Shuttered Organization Funneled Money to Militants, Prosecutors Say
QUOTE: Federal prosecutors opened their case yesterday against what was once the nation's largest Islamic charity, arguing in a Dallas courtroom that the organization funneled at least $12 million to Palestinian militants.
Washington Post Jul 19, 2007 Nonprofit Student Lenders Scrutinized: Probe Called for on Tax Status
QUOTE: The chairman of the House education committee called yesterday for an investigation into whether nonprofit student loan companies are abusing their tax-exempt status.
Washington Post Jun 17, 2007 Habitat for Humanity’s Homes Faulted in Florida
QUOTE: [Although] City inspectors this month examined six houses and found no violations… the perceptions have a life of their own. A project built with sweat equity and good will has had unintended consequences, and costs.
New York Times Jun 11, 2007 Darfur's aid lifeline in danger: Bandits from all factions are increasingly targeting relief convoys and aid workers in Sudan's conflict.
QUOTE: With three rebel groups splitting up into more than a dozen groups – many of them based on personal or tribal loyalties – armed groups have taken to robbing the relatively soft target of aid workers, who have many of the vehicles, money, and communications equipment that an armed movement needs.
Christian Science Monitor Apr 19, 2007 Orphanages brim, but Russia thwarts foreign adoption: This week, the last of 89 foreign-based adoption agencies failed to get reaccreditation.
QUOTE: Defenders of the government crackdown say it's about improving accountability and providing safeguards for Russian children who are adopted abroad. They cite claims that at least 14 Russian kids adopted in the US and Canada have died over the past decade, victims of parental abuse.
Christian Science Monitor Apr 11, 2007 Group Questions Cellphone Fund-Raising
QUOTE: What rankles the consumer group is that each donation is capped at $5 and will incur standard text-messaging fees, which on AT&T are 15 cents. “If you want to contribute $20, you have to send four text messages and you’ll be billed for four text messages,” Mr. Court said. “These contributions are structured so that consumers who want to give more pay a higher price for doing so.”
New York Times Jan 07, 2007 Dark cloud over good works of Gates Foundation
QUOTE: hundreds of Gates Foundation investments — totaling at least $8.7 billion, or 41% of its assets, not including U.S. and foreign government securities — have been in companies that countered the foundation's charitable goals or socially concerned philosophy....investing in destructive or unethical companies is not what is most harmful, said Hawken and other experts, including Douglas Bauer, senior vice president of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, a nonprofit group that assists foundations on policy and ethical issues. Worse, they said, is investing purely for profit, without attempting to improve a company's way of operating.
Los Angeles Times Jan 01, 2007 Executive Sessions: How To Use Them Regularly And Wisely
QUOTE: The notion of a private conversation for board members may seem contrary to the ethos of transparency expected of nonprofit organizations and to the development of a constructive partnership between the chief executive and the board. However, executive sessions are an effective mechanism for boards of all organizations to deal with certain kinds of issues, provided that they are called for the right reasons and handled appropriately.
BoardSource Dec 16, 2006 What Should a Billionaire Give – and What Should You?
QUOTE: In the same world in which more than a billion people live at a level of affluence never previously known, roughly a billion other people struggle to survive on the purchasing power equivalent of less than one U.S. dollar per day. .... Philanthropy on this scale raises many ethical questions: Why are the people who are giving doing so? Does it do any good? Should we praise them for giving so much or criticize them for not giving still more?
New York Times Dec 11, 2006 How you can deduct now, give later: Want to share the wealth, but don't know where? Financial experts point to donor-advised funds as a good choice.
QUOTE: For tax purposes, donor-advised funds function as a charity in their own right. Once the donor has made the contribution, the full amount is tax-deductible in that tax year. (It's also nonrefundable.) Donors can then wait months or years, while the investment presumably grows in value, before "recommending" a disbursement to a particular organization.
Christian Science Monitor Dec 11, 2006 Darfur crisis crosses borders
QUOTE: The crisis in Darfur has exploded in recent weeks, and now threatens to drag fragile neighboring countries into a regional war. Both Chad and the Central African Republic (CAR) have become engulfed in fighting that involves a toxic mix of rebel groups, government forces, armed militias, and civilians.
Christian Science Monitor Nov 05, 2006 Guatemalan Adoption System Under Scrutiny
QUOTE: In other countries, adoptive parents are sought out for abandoned children. In Guatemala, children are frequently sought out for foreign parents seeking to adopt and given up by their birth mothers to baby brokers who may pay from a few hundred dollars to $2,000 for a baby...
New York Times Oct 09, 2006 Where Faith Abides, Employees Have Few Rights
QUOTE: Legislators and regulators are not the only people in government who have drafted special rules for religious organizations. Judges, too, have carved out or preserved safe havens that shield religious employers of all faiths from most employee lawsuits, from laws protecting pensions and providing unemployment benefits, and from laws that give employees the right to form unions to negotiate with their employers. Some of these exemptions are rooted in long traditions, while others have grown from court decisions over the last 15 years.
New York Times Oct 08, 2006 In God’s Name: Secular Laws Cede to Religious Exemptions
QUOTE: In recent years, many politicians and commentators have cited what they consider a nationwide “war on religion” that exposes religious organizations to hostility and discrimination. But such organizations — from mainline Presbyterian and Methodist churches to mosques to synagogues to Hindu temples — enjoy an abundance of exemptions from regulations and taxes. And the number is multiplying rapidly.
New York Times Sep 08, 2006 Crowd Pleasers: An Age of Tainted Admissions and Too Much Homework
QUOTE: the privacy strictures that once protected even the most knuckleheaded students can now be breached via the Internet. As colleges deal with overwhelming numbers of applications by making their calculations more blatantly quantifiable, embarrassing facts and figures have begun finding their way into the public discourse. Students’ test scores, colleges’ rankings in surveys and parents’ bribes all figure in institutions’ decisions.
New York Times Sep 01, 2006 IRS Ends 2-Year Probe Of NAACP's Tax Status: Leader's Criticism of Bush in 2004 Did Not Violate Law, Agency Decides
QUOTE: If the NAACP were stripped of the status, donors would not be allowed to claim contributions to the group on income tax returns. Federal law requires tax-exempt nonprofit organizations to be politically nonpartisan.
Washington Post Aug 31, 2006 Monitors Say Troops Killed Aid Workers in Sri Lanka
QUOTE: In a searing indictment of the Sri Lankan government, Swedish-led cease-fire monitors on Wednesday accused government security forces of killing 17 aid workers early this month...one of the worst attacks against humanitarian workers worldwide in recent years.
New York Times Aug 23, 2006 Conflict of Interest Is Raised in N.S.A. Ruling
QUOTE: The federal judge who ruled last week that President Bush’s eavesdropping program was unconstitutional is a trustee and an officer of a group that has given at least $125,000 to the American Civil Liberties Union.
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