The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) - The American Red Cross is feuding with a philanthropic advisory service that is seeking information about the charity's post-Sept. 11 fund raising.
The Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance requested information last month from the Red Cross about the $850 million donated for its terrorist relief fund.
The alliance said it merely wanted to decide whether the Red Cross still met its standards for charities in light of news media reports and complaints from donors about the fund raising.
"We are very confident that the Red Cross will satisfy all of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance's criteria for sound management," Harold J. Decker, interim president of the Red Cross, said in a letter. "We doubt that there is any charity that has had more scrutiny than the American Red Cross over the past months."
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Decker requested that the alliance restore a report on the Red Cross that was pulled because of questions about the charity. The report was due to expire soon. Each group listed on the alliance's Web site is reviewed every 18 months.
"I am surprised by the tone of Mr. Decker's letter," the alliance's president, H. Art Taylor, said Sunday. "I am at a loss to find any criticism of the Red Cross in my statements."
On Saturday, Taylor explained by the request for information by saying, "We want to make sure that the public can be confident in what's going on at the Red Cross."
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