Edited from a Press Release

CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced his office’s participation in “Operation Donate with Honor,” a sweeping nationwide effort to help consumers avoid fundraising solicitations that falsely claim to help veterans and service members.



The Attorney General, in coordination with the Federal Trade Commission, warns that charity fraudsters target potential donors by using sympathetic sounding names and many other schemes to attract donations for help and support that is never delivered. 
 
“Fraudulently representing a military charity is despicable and cannot be tolerated,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Education is key in preventing an individual’s hard-earned money from ending up in the hands of a scammer. We must help consumers easily identify fraudulent charities and preserve the role of honest charities that are committed to helping our nation’s service members.”
 
Those perpetrating military charity fraud will lure donors via the Internet, telemarketing, direct mail, door-to-door contacts and at retail stores. They may promise to help homeless and disabled veterans, to provide veterans with employment counseling, mental health counseling or other assistance, and to send care packages to deployed service members.
 
The Attorney General appreciates the countless West Virginians who contribute to military-friendly charities, however he urges them to follow these tips to ensure their generosity honors the sacrifice of those who served.

“Operation Donate with Honor” carries broad, bipartisan participation from law enforcement officials and charity regulators from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam and Puerto Rico.
 
The initiative was developed by the FTC and the National Association of State Charity Officials.
 
For more tips on safeguarding donations please visitwww.ftc.gov/charity.  
 
Anyone with questions or concerns about military charity fraud should contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-368-8808, the Eastern Panhandle Consumer Protection Office in Martinsburg at 304-267-0239 or visit the office online at www.wvago.gov.