Four charities have pulled their fundraising events from
President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach,
Florida, in the wake of his response to a white supremacist rally
in Charlottesville, Virginia.
The Cleveland Clinic, American Cancer Society, and American
Friends of Magen David Adom all said they wouldn’t hold their
2018 galas at the resort on Thursday. The organizations had held
their annual events at Mar-a-Lago for a number of years.
On Friday, the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army said
they would not host its event at Mar-a-Lago either. The Red Cross
said in a statement that “it has increasingly become a
source of controversy and pain for many of our volunteers,
employees and supporters.”
The decisions to pull out of Mar-a-Lago come after
a week of turbulent comments from the president
regarding the white-supremacist protests that took
place in Charlottesville, Virginia.
“Our values and commitment to diversity are critical as we work
to address the impact of cancer in every community. It has become
increasingly clear that the challenge to those values is
outweighing other business considerations,” the
American Cancer Society said in a statement.
The Salvation Army said its decision to no longer have its
Holiday Snow Ball at the Mar-A-Lago was because the location was
shifting the subject away from the organization’s mission.
“The Salvation Army relies heavily on fundraising events like The
Holiday Snow Ball in Palm Beach to further our mission of helping
those in need through a range of social services including food
for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, clothing and shelter
for the homeless, and opportunities for the underprivileged.
Because the conversation has shifted away from the purpose of
this event, we will not host it at Mar-a-Lago.”
The organizations join a growing group of organizations and
business leaders who have distanced themselves from the president
after the events in Charlottesville. On Wednesday, the president
said he would disband his two business councils, after a number
of members of his
manufacturing council started to drop out and his
strategy and policy council
had plans to dissolve the group.
Some groups that have hosted their fundraising galas at
Mar-a-Lago in the past, including the Dana-Farber
Cancer Institute and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society,
had already decided not to return to the resort before this week.
Washington Post reporter David Fahrenthold reports that other
major charities, including Susan G. Komen and the Salvation Army,
have said in the past that they still have plans to hold their
events at Mar-a-Lago.
The events can yield $100,000 to $275,000 for the resort, the
Post has reported.