America’s Biggest Charities Are Funneling Millions to Hate Groups From Anonymous Donors (Sludge)
Four donor-advised funds, which create accounts for individuals to anonymously give money to nonprofits, are financing more than 30 anti-Muslim, anti-LGBT, and other hate groups.
Several charitable gift funds, including the largest charity in the United States, are helping dozens of hate groups raise millions of dollars by giving their donors a way to keep their identities secret.
Donors Trust, Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund, Schwab Charitable Fund, and Vanguard Charitable are donor-advised funds that provide individual donors with accounts and contribute their money, attributed to the funds, to the nonprofits of the donors’ choice. These kinds of funds allow donors to keep their charitable money in one place and to save on taxes. They also help these donors keep their names secret by eliminating paper trails at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the organizations receiving the funds that could tie them to their donations.
A Sludge analysis of recent tax filings shows that, from mid-2014 through 2017, these four donor-advised funds combined to give nearly $11 million to 34 groups that the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) considers to be hate groups, according to its 2017 hate map. These hate groups include 12 anti-LGBT groups, 12 anti-Muslim groups, eight anti-immigrant groups, one white nationalist group, and one radical traditional Catholic group.