For press inquiries or to schedule an interview with the Attorney General please contact:
503-378-6002 or Kristina.Edmunson@doj.state.or.us
About Ellen F. Rosenblum
Attorney General Hardy Myers today urged Oregonians to support the victims of Hurricane Katrina but warned that caution is the key word in deciding what form their assistance should take and how to recognize legitimate relief organizations from scams invented by disaster con artists.
"Disasters have always brought out the best and the worst in human beings and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is no different," Myers said. "Giving to legitimate charities that have good track records in dealing with disaster relief will ensure that Oregonians' donations are not wasted."
Myers advised Oregonians to call his Charitable Activities office at (503) 229-5725 before making a contribution to check whether a disaster relief organization has registered with the Department of Justice as required by law before soliciting contributions. Myers added that registration does not mean that the organization is automatically worthy of support and that consumers should also check for any complaints in its history. A current list of registered charities can be accessed through the Department of Justice website at www.doj.state.or.us.
"Charitable giving scams have taken many forms over the years," Myers said. "Some of these already have been reported in Oregon." Specific scams have included:
The Department of Justice "Wise Giving Guide" is available online and by calling the Attorney General's consumer hotline at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or toll-free at 1-877-877-9392.
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