Scottish Government failing charities over bogus collections

Jo has criticised the Scottish Government for failing to tackle bogus charity clothing collectors.

Following the British Heart Foundation’s appeal in the Kirkintilloch Herald for people to beware of companies posing as charities to carry out door-to-door clothing collections, Jo Swinson has criticised the Scottish Government for its failure to crack down on bogus charities.

Bogus charity Helpmates Ltd has frequently distributed flyers to households in East Dunbartonshire asking for clothing donations for the Third World. Bogus charities often steal clothing donations left out on doorsteps for genuine charities, and then sell them on for a profit in Eastern Europe. Jo has led a campaign for the Government to crack down on these criminal gangs.

The Office of Fair Trading is encouraging people to drop any scam leaflets into their ‘Scamnesty’ bins before 26th February. The bins can be found at Tom Johnston House, William Patrick Library, Bishopbriggs Library, Lennoxtown Library and Twechar Healthy Living and Enterprise Centre.

Commenting, Jo said:

“It is estimated that UK charities lose up to £3 million per year to criminal gangs who steal doorstep clothing donations, often posing as charities themselves. The UK Government funded a door-to-door leaflet campaign to make people aware of the problem in England and Wales, but when I wrote to the Scottish Government about it they were not interested in running a similar campaign.

“I would urge anyone who has received a scam leaflet from Helpmates or another company to take it along to the Office of Fair Trading’s ‘Scamnesty’ before 26th February. My website contains information to find out how you can tell if a leaflet is from a genuine charity, or for more information on bogus collectors.”


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