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GoFundMe to donate convoy funds to charity after movement violates “Terms of Service”

Last Updated on February 6, 2022 by YGK News Staff

Update: After pushback from donors, GoFundMe has announced that they will issue automatic refunds to everyone who has donated to the convoy. Any outstanding funds will be donated.

GoFundMe has announced that they are removing the “Freedom Convoy 2022” fundraising page after finding that the protests involved “violence and other unlawful activity.” Over $10 million was ultimately raised, with $1 million having already been disbursed to organizers.  

“GoFundMe supports peaceful protests and we believe that was the intention of the Freedom Convoy 2022 fundraiser when it was first created,” wrote the crowdfunding platform on Friday. “We now have evidence from law enforcement that the previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation, with police reports of violence and other unlawful activity.”

The platform says that as a result of the way that the situation has evolved, it will no longer disburse funds to organizers. 

The announcement comes just a day after Canadian lawmakers requested that GoFundMe representatives speak to the House of Commons. MP’s had requested that GoFundMe representatives explain how the funds won’t go towards promoting hate, such as antisemitism of white supremacy.

In response to the decision, the Freedom Convoy 2022 made an Instagram post, saying that the move is “unacceptable.” “GoFundMe has illegally seized 9 million dollars in donations for the freedom convoy. Anyone who has donated is encouraged to file for a refund.”

The City of Ottawa Police have also released a statement, thanking GoFundMe for listening to their concerns.

“We want to thank @gofundme for listening to our concerns as a City and a police service. The decision to withhold funding for these unlawful demonstrations is an important step and we call on all crowdfunding sites to follow,” wrote Ottawa Police on Friday.

Donors will have until February 19th, 2022 to request a refund using a dedicated form. After this period, the remaining funds will be distributed to credible and established charities verified by GoFundMe.

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