WASHINGTON - After withering public scrutiny, the American Red Cross has announced that all money donated to the September 11 Liberty Fund will be given to the victims' families and their long-term financial needs.
Two weeks ago, the Red Cross hired Edelman's Washington, DC practice and the firm of Cholpak, Leonard, Schecter & Associates, to help it navigate a barrage of bad press claiming the charity had misled the public on how it would spend the $564 million raised for the Liberty Fund.
On November 14, the Red Cross held a press conference with members of the Oversight and Investigation Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee to announce that it would not be diverting $200 million of the money to a plan to prepare for future terrorist attacks.
'We deeply regret that our activities over the past eight weeks have not been as sharply focused as America wants, nor as focused as the victims of this tragedy deserve,' said Harold Decker, CEO of the Red Cross at the press conference. 'The people affected by this terrible tragedy have been our first priority, and beginning today, they will be the only priority of the Liberty Fund.'
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