A group of activists against Canada’s vaccine mandate, whose fundraiser on GoFundMe was shut down, have raised more than $3.5 million on a Christian crowdfunding site.
According to the Washington Post, the group, “Freedom Convoy,” had raised some $8 million in donations on GoFundMe, but the fundraising site froze the donations.
Then, after taking the fundraiser elsewhere, Freedom Convoy managed to raise $3.5 million on GiveSendGo, a Christian crowdfunding site, in just two days.
Freedom Convoy organizers said the group is protesting the U.S. and Canadian rules that require cross-border truckers to be fully vaccinated to enter either country.
This weekend, the city of Ottawa – Canada’s capital – declared a state of emergency as protestors in their big-rig trucks blocked streets, fired fireworks and honked their horns.
“They have converged in our city, and there are plans for more to come,” said Ottawa Police Chief Peter Sloly, adding that the group is “putting our city and our residents, our partners and our officers at great risk.”
Authorities estimate that about 5,000 protestors and at least 1,000 vehicles are involved in the protest.
GoFundMe said last week that it removed the fundraiser for Freedom Convoy from its site because it had violated its terms of service. GoFundMe representatives told news outlets that the site released an initial $1 million of the donations to Freedom Convoy after the group agreed to confirm the funds would only be used in peaceful protests.
GoFundMe representatives said the “previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation” and said it would not release any more of the funds. Donors have two weeks to submit a request for a refund, and any remaining funds will be distributed to other charities.
Several Republican attorneys, who believe the site acted unfairly, have said they are planning on launching an investigation into GoFundMe.
“What they publicly proposed to do is unfair and potentially a violation of Ohio law,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said. “I’m glad that they didn’t go there, but that doesn’t mean that they’ve agreed in other instances to do the right thing. So we need to look in at the policy and practice of the company.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/5m3photos
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.