Sello de Jimmy Patronis, CFO

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CFO Jimmy Patronis to GoFundMe: Promote Florida’s Disaster Fund Website

10/4/2022
For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 4, 2022
Contact: Office of Communications, Communications@MyFloridaCFO.com, 850.413.2842

CFO Jimmy Patronis to GoFundMe: Promote Florida’s Disaster Fund Website

SOUTHWEST, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis issued a carta to GoFundMe requesting that they assist in promoting the Florida Disaster Fund website, which is the state of Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida communities during times of emergency or disaster. Additionally, following the Surfside Condo collapse there were 21 fraudulent sites pulled down from GoFundMe’s website, and the CFO is insisting that they steer those who are trying to do a good thing in a time of disaster in the right direction and provide full transparency to where donations are going. To contribute to the Florida Disaster Fund, please visit www.FloridaDisasterFund.org or text DISASTER to 20222.

Read full letter below and aquí.

4 de octubre de 2022

Tim Cadogan, CEO
GoFundMe
855 Jefferson Ave
PO Box 1329
Redwood City, CA 94063

Mr. Cadogan: 

As the State of Florida continues to respond to the devastating impacts of Hurricane Ian, we know there will be many thoughtful charitable Americans throughout our nation wanting to contribute to support the rebuild of these Florida communities. From experience, GoFundMe has had a checkered past regarding its transparency and the development of these fraudulent sites.

As you may be aware, Florida First Lady Casey DeSantis has set up a charitable website at: www.FloridaDisasterFund.org. This is the State of Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida communities during times of emergency or disaster. All administrative and credit card fees have been waived so 100% of every donation can be used to help Floridians recover from Hurricane Ian.

It would be beneficial to folks across the United States if you would lever the resources of your organization to assist in pushing the Florida Disaster Fund website far and wide. Therefore, I am requesting that you put information regarding the Florida Disaster Fund front and center on your website. In doing so, those who are looking to assist can easily identify a legitimate site to donate to.

I think that while there are certainly many good instances where GoFundMe can benefit families, there have also been many people that be been a victim of fraud. We know for example that 21 sites were pulled down during the tragic Surfside condo collapse, and we cannot let that happen again. I would like to know how many fraudulent sites you have identified following Hurricane Ian. What do you do when you find a fraudulent site? How are those consumers made whole? Do you refund their donation to them? It is critical that the dollars being donated by good-hearted people actually get to those that truly need it.

As CFO, it is my role to be the watchdog over people’s dollars, and preying on Floridians after a tragedy, is unconscionable. I insist that GoFundMe steer those who are trying to do a good thing in a time of disaster in the right direction and provide full transparency in where these donations are going.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.

Atentamente,

Jimmy Patronis