YCQM Nov. 24, 2019

BURLINGTON, Vt. Darren: AND GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE,
I'M DARREN PERRON.
ON CHANNEL 3, "YOU CAN QUOTE
ME," CONGRESSMAN WELCH
RESPONDS TO BOMBSHELL
TESTIMONY DURING THE
IMPEACHMENT HEARING.
ALSO, THE WIVES OF TWO MEN WHO
LIKELY DIED FROM EXPOSURE TO
BURN PITS IN WAR ZONES JOIN ME
TO DISCUSS HOW THEY ARE
RAISING AWARENESS, MONEY FOR
CANCER CAUSES, AND HONORING
THEIR HUSBAND'S MEMORIES.
PLUS, SPOTTING SCAMS AROUND
THE HOLIDAYS.
WE DID THE DIGGING SO YOU CAN
BE SURE YOUR DONATIONS GO TO
LEGITIMATE CHARITIES.
AND WE FOLLOWED THE MONEY IN
VERMONT.
AND THAT'S WHERE WE BEGIN THIS
MORNING.
WHEN IT COMES TO COLLECTING
CASH, HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT
YOUR MONEY IS ACTUALLY GOING
TO THE CAUSE YOU WANT TO
SUPPORT?
OUR INVESTIGATION REVEALED
PAID FUNDRAISERS FOR-PROFIT
COMPANIES THAT ARE HIRED BY
CHARITIES TO RAISE MONEY BY
PHONE CALLS OR MAILINGS ARE
LOOSELY REGULATED.
THEY CAN KEEP UP TO 100% OF
DONATED MONEY.
WE DISCOVERED MILLIONS OF
DOLLARS AMERICANS DONATE TO
GOOD CAUSES NEVER GET TO THE
PROGRAMS THEMSELVES, AND
INSTEAD PAY FOR THE
FUNDRAISING.
CAT VIGLIENZONI JOINS US LIVE
IN THE STUDIO WITH WHAT SHE
LEARNED ABOUT FUNDRAISING
TACTICS IN VERMONT.
CAT VIGLIENZONI TO BE CLEAR,
THIS IS NOT TO DISCOURAGE YOU
FROM DONATING, MERELY TO MAKE
SURE YOUR CHARITY OF CHOICE
GETS TO KEEP AS MUCH OF YOUR
DONATION AS POSSIBLE.
FORTUNATELY VERMONT MADE THAT
INFORMATION EASY TO FIND OUT,
UNLIKE OTHER STATES, VERMONT
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE
TRACKS IN DETAIL WHO HAS BEEN
PAID FOR RAISE MONEY HERE AND
HOW MUCH IS GOING TO CHAIR I.
THE GOAL WITH THIS DATABASE IS
TO HELP YOU MAKE INFORMED
DECISIONS WHERE YOU GIVE YOUR
MONEY.
I SPOKE TO LOCAL CHARITIES FOR
FIND OUT WHEN THEY WOULD DO
THE FUNDRAISING THEMSELVES AND
WHEN THEY WOULD HIRE
PROFESSIONALS.
700 ENVELOPES.
>> WE DID 3,000 THE LAST ONE.
>> Cat: STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS
EXTENT -- EXTENT SPENT AN
EVENING SEALING LETTERS TO
POTENTIAL DONORS.
NON-PROFIT MAKES SURE THEY GET
THE MOST BANG FOR THEIR BUCK
BY DOING ALMOST ALL THEIR
OUTREACH IN-HOUSE.
>> WE SAVE SO MUCH MONEY BY
DOING MORE OF THE WORK HERE.
IT IS REALLY JUST PAPER AND
PRINTING, AND OUR TIME THAT IT
IS KIND OF FUN, TOO.
>> Cat: FUNDRAISING IS THE
BREAD AND BUTTER.
THREE QUARTERS OF ANNUAL
REVENUE COMES FROM CHARITY
SUPPORT.
PEOPLE WHO SEE ANIMALS LIKE
MOLLY AND WANT TO FIND THEM
FOREVER HOMES.
MOST PEOPLE GIVE DURING THE
HOLIDAY SEASON.
RIGHT NOW THEY ARE GETTING
THEIR NAME IN FRONT OF EYES
AND WALLETS TO COMPETE FOR
DONATION DOLLARS.
>> THIS MAILING IS SO
SUPPORTERS, HIGHLIGHTING ALL
THE AMAZING THINGS WE DO WITH
THE DONATION, HOPEFULLY
ENCOURAGING THEM TO GIVE
AGAIN.
>> WE WANT EVERY DOLLAR TO
COUNT.
WE WANT EVERY VERMONTER IN
NEED TO BE SERVED.
>> CHRIS CURTIS IS THE CHIEF
OF THE PUBLIC PROTECTION SDI
DIVISION OF THE VERMONT
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE, IN
CHARGE OF MAKING SURE YOU KNOW
WHERE YOUR MONEY IS REALLY
GOING.
>> SOME OF THEM THEY DIDN'T
RAISE ANYTHING, SO THERE WAS
NOTHING PAID.
>> Cat: HE SHOWS US THIS
DATABASE, WHICH TRACKS PAID
FUNDRAISERS, COMPANIES HIRED
TO BRING IN DONATIONS.
IT SHOWS YOU HOW MUCH OF YOUR
MONEY IS GUARANTEED TO GO TO
THE CHARITY, AND HOW MUCH
ACTUALLY DID.
>> VERMONTERS CAN LOOK AT THAT
FOR THEMSELVES AND MAKE A
DETERMINATION WHETHER OR IF
THEY WANT TO GIVE, OR GIVE TO
THE ORGANIZATION DIRECTLY, AND
BYPASS THE PAID FUNDRAISING
OPERATION.
>> Cat: PAID FUNDRAISING IS
LEGAL AND LEGITIMATE, BUT ONE
TREND CURTIS SAID HE NOTICES
WHEN HE LOOKS AT THEIR DATA
IS, THERE ARE FEWER OF THEM.
THERE'S BEEN A 60% DROP JUST
IN THE PAST FOUR YEARS.
OF THE 14 PAID FUNDRAISING
COMPANIES REGISTERED HERE NOW,
ALMOST ALL OF THEIR 108
CAMPAIGNS ARE FOR NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS.
>> PEOPLE HAVE LEARNED THAT
THEY CAN DO THIS BETTER FOR
THEMSELVES USING A GREAT
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR AS PART
OF THEIR TEAM AND NOT HAVE TO
HIRE OUT OF HOUSE.
>> Cat: BUT WE DID SEE A FEW
LOCAL NON-PROFITS ON THE LIST.
INCLUDING THE VERMONT POLICE
K-9 ASSOCIATION, THE
UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT MEDICAL
CENTER, VERMONT PBS, AND
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT.
>> THERE ARE A LOT OF
COMPETING DEMANDS FOR DOLLARS,
EVEN WITHIN THE SPECIAL
OLYMPICS MOVEMENT.
>> Cat: SPECIAL OLYMPICS
VERMONT CEO SAYS THEIR MISSION
CENTERS ON INCLUSIVITY, FROM
ATHLETE EMPLOYMENT TO UNIFIED
SPORTS TEAMS, TO OTHER EFFORTS
THAT ENRICH THE LIVES OF
PEOPLE WITH AND WITHOUT
INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES.
BUT THOSE PROGRAMS COME AT A
COST.
THEY HAVE TO RAISE ALMOST
EVERY DOLLAR IN THEIR $1.3
MILLION BUDGET.
[ CHEERING ]
THE PENGUIN PLUNGE BRINGS IN A
FRIGID 40% OF THAT.
BUT ABOUT 20 TO 25% COMES IN
DURING THE GIVING SEASON.
RIGHT NOW, THEY ARE REACHING
OUT TO DONORS THROUGH
MAILINGS, PHONE CALLS, AND
MORE.
SOME HAPPENS FROM THEIR SOUTH
BURLINGTON OFFICE; OTHERS
THROUGH A NATIONAL CAMPAIGN.
>> I THINK BOTH ARE EFFECTIVE.
ONE OF THE THINGS WE KNOW
ABOUT ASKING AND GIVING IS
THAT IT TAKES MULTIPLE TRIES
IN MULTIPLE DIFFERENT WAYS.
>> Cat: BUT HIRING
PROFESSIONALS COMES AT A COST.
AND WE SAW THE AMOUNT OF PAID
FUNDRAISING COMPANY KEPT
VARIED WIDELY.
DIAL AMERICA MARKETING
INCORPORATED PROMISED AND GAVE
JUST 10% OF THE 18,000 THEY
RAISED IN A YEAR.
HERITAGE COMPANY INCORPORATED
COLLECTED ABOUT 75,000 OVER
THREE YEARS.
50 TO 70% OF THAT WENT TO
CHAIR I.
>> ON YOUR MARK, SET.
>> TO KEEP ALL YOUR MONEY
HELPING ATHLETES, SEE SAYS
REACH OUT AT THEIR OFFICE
DIRECTLY, OR CONTRIBUTE TO ONE
OF THEIR EVENTS LIKE THE
PLUNGE.
THEY GET TO KEEP ALL OF WHAT
THEY RAISE THERE.
>> WE ARE GRATEFUL FOR EVERY
DOLLAR, BECAUSE, YOU KNOW,
EACH ONE MAKES A DIFFERENCE.
>> Cat: HOW DO YOU KNOW IF
YOU'RE DEALING WITH A
NON-PROFIT DIRECTLY OR WITH A
PAID FUNDRAISER?
CURTIS SAID IF YOU ARE ON THE
PHONE, JUST ASK.
AND ALSO, ASK HOW MUCH OF YOUR
DONATION IS GOING TO THE
CHARITY ITSELF.
IT IS A RED FLAG IF THEY CAN'T
OR WON'T TELL YOU.
AND ALSO, CALL THE NON-PROFIT
DIRECTLY AND JUST ASK IF THEY
ARE FUNDRAISING.
ALSO MAKE SURE YOU AREN'T
GETTING SCAMMED BY A FAKE
FUNDRAISER.
THEY ARE OUT THERE.
DARREN?
>> Darren: THANK YOU.
STAND BY.
NEXT WE'LL DIG DEEPER INTO HOW
YOU CAN AVOID THOSE SCAMS,
PLUS, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
JOINS US WITH SOME ADVICE AS
WELL.
AND LATER, MILITARY BURN PITS
MAKING SOLDIERS SICK.
STILL AHEAD, THE WIVES OF TWO
VERMONTERS WHO DIED JOIN US,
HOPING CONTINUED AWARENESS
WILL SAVE LIVES.
DON'T GO AWAY.
WHILE SOME OF THE SHAM
CHARITIES THAT CLAIM TO HELP
VETERANS OR FIRST RESPONDERS
HAVE BEEN SHUT DOWN OVER THE
PAST COUPLE YEARS, THE PAID
FUNDRAISING COMPANIES THAT
RAISE MONEY FOR THEM ARE STILL
ACTIVE.
AND STILL COLLECTING MONEY.
IN THE NAME OF VETERANS,
POLICE AND FIREFIGHTERS.
CAT VIGLIENZONI JOINS US AGAIN
WITH WHAT YOU NEED TO ASK TO
MAKE SURE YOUR MONEY GETS TO A
LEGITIMATE CHAIR I.
>> Cat: IT'S TRICKY.
YOU ARE FACED WITH A CALLER OR
FLYER IN THE MAIL TUGGING AT
YOUR HEARTSTRINGS.
THEY TELL YOU THAT HELPING
VETERANS, POLICE, KIDS OR
ANIMALS.
THEY WANT YOU TO GIVE YOUR
MONEY TO HELP.
THAT'S ALL WELL AND GOOD, IF
THE CHARITY IS LEGIT.
>> YOU ALWAYS WANT TO BE
CAREFUL.
>> Cat: CHRIS CURTIS WITH THE
PUBLIC PROTECTION DIVISION OF
THE VERMONT ATTORNEY GENERAL'S
OFFICE SAID WHILE YOU SHOULD
EXPECT TO GET SOME KIND OF
LETTER OR CARD, EVEN A PHONE
CALL DURING THE NEXT COUPLE
MONTHS, YOU SHOULD NOT ASSUME
THAT JUST BECAUSE IT'S A
PROFESSIONAL PAMPHLET, OR A
GOOD SALES PITCH, THAT IT'S
LEGITIMATE.
OR EVEN THAT IT IS ACTUALLY
REPRESENTING THE CHARITY IT
SATISFIES IT IS.
>> THERE CAN BE IMPOSTER
SCAMS, WHERE SOMEBODY IS
IMPERSONATING A NON-PROFIT
ORGANIZATION.
>> Cat: THE BEST WAY TO AVOID
PARTING WITH YOUR MONEY TO A
SCAMMER?
DO A LITTLE DIGGING.
ASK QUESTIONS LIKE WHO THE
PERSON IS, WHAT THE CHARITY
IS, WHERE IT'S LOCATED, HOW
YOUR DONATION WILL BE USED,
AND IF THEY ARE A PAID
FUNDRAISER.
THEN DOUBLE CHECK THAT
INFORMATION YOURSELF.
BE WARY OF ANYONE WHO
PRESSURES YOU INTO GIVING
MONEY RIGHT AWAY, ESPECIALLY
THROUGH CASH MAILINGS OR WIRE
TRANSFERS.
IF YOU GET A LETTER THANKING
YOU FOR A DONATION YOU ALREADY
MADE, AND YOU KNOW YOU DIDN'T,
IT IS ALMOST CERTAINLY A SCAM,
AND BE EXTRA CAREFUL WITH
EMAILS ASKING YOU FOR MONEY
BECAUSE THEY MIGHT NOT BE
SAFE.
THE BEST WAY TO AVOID SCAMMERS
IS TO REACH OUT TO YOUR
CHARITY OF CHOICE DIRECTLY AND
ASK HOW YOU CAN SEND THEM
MONEY.
>> REALLY, CALL AND VERIFY AND
AUTHENTICATE THE NON-PROFITS
YOU ARE GIVING TO.
THAT'S THE NUMBER ONE THING.
>> Cat: NON-PROFITS WE SPOKE
WITH AGREE.
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT SAID
THEY ARE MORE THAN HAPPY TO
TAKE YOUR CALLS AND TALK TO
YOU ABOUT THE PROGRAMS THEY
OFFER AND WHERE YOUR DONATION
WILL BE USED.
>> BEING REALLY CLEAR AND
EXPLICIT ABOUT EXACTLY WHAT WE
DO IS HUGE.
>> Cat: AT THE HUMANE SOCIETY
OF CHITTENDEN COUNTY, IF YOU
REACH OUT TO THEM DIRECTLY,
YOU GET A PERSONAL RESPONSE
BACK.
>> PERSONALLY I SIGN AND WRITE
LETTERS TO EVERY PERSON WHO
MAKES A GIFT OF ANY AMOUNT.
THERE IS NO GIFT TOO SMALL.
>> Darren: CAT JOINS ME NOW
ALONG WITH THE ATTORNEY
GENERAL, T.J. DONOVAN.
GOOD MORNING TO BOTH OF YOU.
>> Cat: GOOD MORNING.
>> Darren: LET'S START WITH
WHAT IS AVAILABLE FOR
RESOURCES FROM YOUR OFFICE, SO
THAT FOLKS CAN LOOK TO SEE IF
THEY ARE BEING SCAMMED.
>> SURE.
THE FIRST THING PEOPLE SHOULD
DO IS GO TO AGOVERMONT.GOV, SO
THEY CAN ACCESS THE REPORT
THAT CAT CHRONICD ABOUT WHO
THE PAID FUNDRAISERS ARE.
THE NEXT TOOL AVAILABLE IS
KNOWLEDGE, AND THAT MEANS
ASKING QUESTIONS.
WHEN YOU GET THAT CALL OR YOU
GET THAT SOLICITATION, ASK THE
QUESTION.
ARE YOU A PAID FUND RAISER?
THE SECOND FOLLOW-UP QUESTION
IS THIS: WHAT ARE YOU TAKING,
WHAT IS THE PERCENT?
IF THEY DON'T TELL YOU THAT,
ASK US, BECAUSE I THINK
VERMONTERS ARE GENEROUS, THEY
GIVE THROUGHOUT THE YEAR, BUT
ESPECIALLY OVER THE HOLIDAYS,
AND THEY EXPECT THAT THEIR
MONEY IS GOING TO THE CHARITY
TO ADDRESS THE CAUSE THEY
BELIEVE IN, NOT TO A PAID
FUNDRAISER.
>> Darren: YOU MENTIONED TO ME
WHILE WE WERE CHATTING THERE
ARE OTHER RESOURCES, TOO.
>> Cat: COUPLE QUESTIONS I GOT
WERE FROM PEOPLE WHO LIVE
OUTSIDE OF VERMONT AND WANTED
TO KNOW WHAT KIND OF RESOURCES
WERE AVAILABLE ON A NATIONAL
LEVEL.
THE BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU HAS
A CHARITY SECTION, ALSO
CHARITY NAVIGATOR, A PRETTY
GOOD WEBSITE, TOO, ESPECIALLY
DEALING WITH, YOU KNOW, IF YOU
ARE OUT OF STATE AND DEALING
WITH SOMETHING LIKE THIS.
>> Darren: ATTORNEY GENERAL,
WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON SCAMS
YOUR OFFICE HEARS ABOUT DURING
THE HOLIDAY SEASON?
>> WELL, THE MOST COMMON SCAM
THAT WE SEE YEAR-ROUND IS
GOING TO BE THE IRS SCAM.
AND ANYTHING THAT'S GOING TO
PULL ON PEOPLE'S HEARTSTRINGS,
WHETHER IT'S ABOUT CHILDREN,
WHETHER IT'S ABOUT MILITARY
VETERANS, WHETHER IT'S BEEN
ANIMALS, CERTAINLY YOU ARE
GOING TO SEE THAT, OVER THE
HOLIDAYS.
AND I THINK PEOPLE SHOULD JUST
BE CAREFUL.
OF COURSE WE WANT PEOPLE TO
GIVE, AND VERMONTERS BY AND
LARGE ARE AN INCREDIBLY
GENEROUS GROUP.
LET'S JUST ASK THE QUESTION, I
THINK, YOU KNOW, I UNDERSTAND
CHARITIES UTILIZING PAID
FUNDRAISERS, BUT WE ARE A
SMALL STATE.
IT IS A CALL TO ACTION FOR
VERMONTERS TO VOLUNTEER THEIR
TIME TO PUT THOSE STAMPS ON
THE ENVELOPES AND DO THOSE
PHONATHONS THEMSELVES, BECAUSE
THAT'S HOW MOST LOCAL
CHARITIES OPERATE IN THE
STATE.
I THINK WE ARE PRETTY LUCKY.
>> Darren: CAT, DURING YOUR
INVESTIGATION DID ANY OF THESE
NON-PROFITS REVEAL HOW THEY
ARE MOVING AWAY FROM PAID
FUNDRAISING?
>> Cat: RIGHT.
CHRIS CURTIS MENTIONED ONE OF
THEM, HAVING A GOOD
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR ON STAFF,
WHO CAN DEAL WITH, YOU KNOW,
BOTH THE FUNDRAISING ASPECT,
ALSO THEY MIGHT DEAL WITH YOUR
SOCIAL MEDIA PREPS AS WELL.
THAT'S ACTUALLY SOMETHING
WE -- PRESENCE AS WELL.
WE HEARD FROM NON-PROFITS,
STARTING TO LEVERAGE SOCIAL
MEDIA TO GET THE WORD OUT TO
PEOPLE WHO ALREADY EXPRESSED
AN INTEREST IN THEIR MISSION
AND IN WHAT THEY DO.
ALSO, YOU KNOW, YOU SAW THIS
AT THE HUMANE SOCIETY, GETTING

VOLUNTEERS BOARD TO STUFF
ANIMALS, OR MAYBE MAKING A
PHONE CALL, OR TALKING TO
THEIR FRIENDS.
WE'VE SEEN A LOT MORE OF THESE
EVENTS POPPING UP, TOO.
WE HAVE THE PLUNGE, THE BIG
ONE FOR SPECIAL OLYMPICS
VERMONT, HUMANE SOCIETY HAS
SEVERAL THROUGHOUT THE YEAR,
SEVERAL WALKS, PURSES FOR PAWS
COMING UP AT THE BEGINNING OF
NEXT YEAR.
AND THOSE ARE ALWAYS TO GET
PEOPLE INTERACTIVE WITH THE
CHARITY, AND ENGAGING, BECAUSE
ONE THING I DID HEAR FROM
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT, MANY
OF THEIR DONORS ACTUALLY START
AS VOLUNTEERS.
SO YOU GET PEOPLE IN THAT WAY,
AND THROUGH EVENTS THAT CAN
CAUSE THEM TO, YOU KNOW,
REALLY GET INVOLVED WITH YOUR
CHARITY IN A BIGGER WAY.
ALSO, PEOPLE ARE RAISING
MONEY, IT IS EASIER FOR PEOPLE
TO ASK THEIR OPEN FRIENDS FOR
MONEY AS OPPOSED TO YOU HAVING
TO MAKE THE EXTRA CONNECTION.
>> Darren: SURE.
WHAT ABOUT LAW ENFORCEMENT.
WHAT CAN YOUR OFFICE DO ABOUT
GOING AFTER THESE PEOPLE?
THE COURT: THERE'S A COUPLE
THINGS --
>>>.
>> IT CAN BE CRIMINAL OR
CIVIL.
YOU HAVE CRIMINAL PENALTIES.
UNDER A CONSUMER PROTECTION
LAW, ANYBODY THAT IS ACTING IN
WHAT WE CALL AN UNFAIR OR
DECEPTIVE ACT IS CERTAINLY
ACTIONABLE BY VERMONT AND THE
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE.
BUT I THINK WHEN WE TALK ABOUT
THESE ISSUES, IT IS RAISING
AWARENESS ABOUT SCAMS IS
ALWAYS THE BEST DEFENSE.
SHARING THESE STORIES,
BRINGING TRANSPARENCY INTO
THESE TRANSACTIONS, BECAUSE
PEOPLE WANT TO GIVE.
THEY WANT TO DO THE RIGHT
THING.
THEY JUST DON'T WANT TO MAKE
SURE THAT EITHER 75% OR 100%
IN SOME CASES OF THEIR MONEY
IS GOING TO THE PAID
FUNDRAISER AND NOT THE
CHARITY.
TRANSPARENCY AWARENESS IS
CRITICALLY IMPORTANT.
IN THE EGREGIOUS CASES WE HAVE
TOOLS CIVILLY AND CRIMINALLY
IF WE NEED THEM.
>> Darren: WHEN YOU LOOKED AT
THE LIST OF PAID FUNDRAISERS,
ANYTHING STAND OUT?
>> Cat: A LOT OF NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS DOING PAID
FUNDRAISING IN VERMONT.
CANCER SOCIETY, PLANNED
PARENTHOOD, KIDS WISH NETWORK,
DIFFERENT LAW ENFORCEMENT
FUNDS, ANIMAL ADVOCACY
ORGANIZATIONS, ET CETERA.
REALLY ALSO, DARREN, IT WAS A
LOT OF UNIVERSITIES ON THE
LIST.
I MEAN, SO MANY COLLEGES AND
UNIVERSITIES ON THAT LIST.
THAT STOOD OUT TO ME THE MOST.
YOU KNOW, IN A WAY, IT KIND OF
MAKES SENSE THAT THE NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS WOULD MORE USE
PAID FUND RAZE RAISERS IN
VERMONT, THEY DON'T HAVE THE
LOCAL PRESENCE TO DO THE
OUTREACH IN THE COMMUNITY THEY
WOULD NEED TO BE ABLE TO GET
DONATIONS.
THEY HAVE TO HIRE SOMEONE TO
DO THAT JOB.
>> Darren: FROM YOUR
PERSPECTIVE, ATTORNEY GENERAL,
IS THIS FRUSTRATING TO SEE HOW
LITTLE CAN ACTUALLY GO TO A
NON-PROFIT?
>> ABSOLUTELY.
THAT'S A CONVERSATION WE HAVE
TO HAVE IN OUR STATE, YOU
KNOW, AS PEOPLE BECOME MORE
AWARE OF THIS ISSUE, AND,
LOOK, I WANT TO BE CLEAR,
THERE ARE SOME LEGITIMATE PAID
FUNDRAISERS.
LET'S BE CLEAR ABOUT THAT.
BUT UNFORTUNATELY, AS WE SEE
IN ALL ASPECTS, IF THERE IS
ANY ROOM FOR PEOPLE TO RIP
PEOPLE OFF, PEOPLE TAKE
ADVANTAGE.
I THINK THIS IS A CONVERSATION
THAT PERHAPS WE HAVE TO HAVE
IN THE LEGISLATURE, IT IS A
CONVERSATION THAT PERHAPS YOU
HAVE TO HAVE AS CAT SAID, THIS
IS A NATIONAL -- THESE ARE
NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS.
PERHAPS AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL
TO MAKE SURE THERE ARE CAPS ON
THIS.
BECAUSE I THINK IF YOU ASK ANY
VERMONTER THAT GAVE MONEY AND
THEY LEARNED THAT EITHER HALF
OR A THIRD OR MORE, I MEAN,
THE FACT THAT 100% --
>> Cat: SOME SAID 1%.
THAT WAS A HUGE NUMBER ON THE
LIST THAT YOU HAVE ON YOUR
WEBSITE, A LOT OF THEM SAID 1%
IS GOING TO CHARITY.
YOU KNOW, A LITTLE BIT LIKE,
WHOA.
>> RIGHT.
I THINK THIS IS AN ISSUE, AND
YOU ARE GOING TO SEE MORE
SCRUTINY, YOU ARE GOING TO SEE
MORE CONVERSATIONS AT THE
LEGISLATIVE LEVEL TO SAY
SHOULD THERE BE MORE
REGULATION HERE TO MAKE SURE
VERMONTERS' MONEY IS GOING TO
THE PLACES THAT THEY INTENDED
IT TO GO.
NO VERMONTER INTENDED IT TO GO
TO THE PAID FUNDRAISER, THEY
INTENDED IT TO GO TO THE CHAIR
I.
>> Darren: ON THE BOOKS IS
THERE ANYTHING PAID
FUNDRAISERS CAN OR CANNOT DO?
>> IT IS GOVERNORSED BY
VERMONT, AND CONSUMERS,
CHARITIES, REGULATES THE
SYSTEM, BUT IT IS A DECEPTIVE
ACT WHEN YOU LOOK AT IT.
I AM NOT SURE GIVEN OUR
CURRENT STATE OF THE LAW THAT
IT WOULD QUALIFY AS THAT.
I THINK TRANSPARENCY AND
DISCLOSURE ARE INCREDIBLY
IMPORTANT.
I THINK GIVING PEOPLE,
VERMONTERS, THE INFORMATION IS
ALWAYS THE BEST APPROACH TO
DEALING WITH THESE ISSUES,
BECAUSE VERMONTERS ARE SMART,
THEY UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY ARE
DOING.
GIVE THEM THE INFORMATION,
THEY WILL MAKE THE RIGHT
DECISION.
AS WE SAID, CALL THE CHARITY
DIRECTLY.
THIS IS A SMALL STATE.
PEOPLE KNOW WHO THE CHARITIES
ARE AND WHO THE VOLUNTEERS
ARE, THEY CAN GET THE MONEY
DIRECTLY TO THE CHARITY.
>> T.J. DONOVAN, THANK YOU FOR
YOUR INVESTIGATION.
APPRECIATE THAT.
>> Darren: COMING UP NEXT,
CONGRESSMAN WELCH ON THE
IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS AND
MILITARY WIDOWS CONTINUE TO
FIGHT FOR ACTION ON BURN PITS
IN WAR ZONES.
YOU'RE WATCHING CHANNEL 3'S
"YOU CAN QUOTE ME," AND WE ARE
BACK IN A MOMENT.
>>> WAS THERE A QUID PRO QUO?
AS I TESTIFIED PREVIOUSLY WITH
REGARD TO THE REQUESTED WHITE
HOUSE CALL AND THE WHITE HOUSE
MEETING, THE ANSWER IS YES.
>> Darren: PRESIDENT TRUMP'S
HAND-PICKED AMBASSADOR TO THE
EUROPEAN UNION SENT SHOCKWAVES
ACROSS THE U.S. CAPITOL,
CHANGING HIS STORY AND
DIRECTLY IMPLICATING THE
PRESIDENT IN THE PRESSURE
CAMPAIGN AGAINST UKRAINE.
GORDON SONDLAND TOLD CONGRESS
THERE WAS A QUID PRO QUO, AN
ATTEMPT TO TRADE MILITARY
FUNDING FOR AN INVESTIGATION
OF MR. TRUMP'S RIVALS, AND IT
WAS DONE AT THE DIRECTION OF
THE PRESIDENT.
VERMONT CONGRESSMAN PETER
WELCH SITS ON THE HOUSE
INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE WHICH
HELD THE IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS.
WELCH ALSO RAISED CONCERNS
AFTER INFORMATION CAME OUT
THAT RUSSIAN SPIES LIKELY
INTERCEPTED THE AMBASSADOR'S
CALL WITH PRESIDENT TRUMP.
OUR WASHINGTON REPORTER KYLE
MIDURA CAUGHT UP WITH THE
CONGRESSMAN RIGHT AFTER THE
HEARING.
>> THE CALL FROM SONDLAND
WHERE HE WAS TALKING TO THE
PRESIDENT ON A NON-SECURE
PHONE IN A RESTAURANT, THE
RUSSIANS WERE LISTENING.
THEY HAD CLEARLY BECOME AWARE
THAT THE WHITE HOUSE WAS
WITHHOLDING AID, AND PRESIDENT
ZELENSKY IN A VERY COMPROMISED
POSITION WHEN HE HAD THE
RUSSIANS AT HIS BORDER AND
ACROSS HIS BORDER IN UKRAINE.
SO THE REAL NATIONAL SECURITY
IMPLICATIONS HERE, AND I FEEL
THAT THERE WAS A LOSS OF LIFE
THAT WAS RELATED TO THE FACT
THAT THE RUSSIANS REALLY HAD
INFORMATION, I SUSPECT, FROM
THE UNSECURED PHONE CALLS.
>> THE PRESIDENT YESTERDAY
SAID I DON'T WANT ANYTHING
FROM UKRAINE, I NEVER WANTED
ANYTHING FROM UKRAINE.
THE REPUBLICANS HAVE ARGUED,
LOOK, WE DON'T HAVE ANYONE WHO
TESTIFIED WHO HEARD IT
STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE'S
MOUTH, SO TO SPEAK.
HOW DO YOU RESPOND TO THAT?
>> SONDLAND HEARD IT, AND THE
FACT IS THE PRESIDENT SAID IT.
KEEP IN MIND, THIS ALL
STARTED, THIS WHOLE
INVESTIGATION STARTED WHEN
PEOPLE WHO WERE ON THE PHONE
CALL APPARENTLY TALKED TO THE
WHISTLEBLOWER.
THE WHISTLEBLOWER REPORT CAME
OUT.
THE PRESIDENT RELEASED THE
TRANSCRIPT OF THE CALL, AND IN
IT HE SAID HE WANTED A FAVOR.
AND THE FAVOR WAS CROWD STRIKE
HUNTER BIDEN AND VICE
PRESIDENT BIDEN.
HE WANTED THOSE
INVESTIGATIONS.
THAT'S DIRECT OUT OF THE MOUTH
OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED
STATES.
THE ULTIMATE QUESTION HERE IS
THE FACTS OF WHETHER WHAT HE
DID WAS USING PUBLIC OFFICE
FOR PRIVATE PERSONAL GAIN.
THERE'S OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE
THAT HE DID.
DAY DARE NORTH COUNTRY
CONGRESSMAN --
>> Darren: ELISE, WE ASKED THE
REPUBLICAN FOR AN INTERVIEW,
TOO, BUT SHE WAS UNAVAILABLE.
MORE THAN 3,000 VERMONT
MILITARY MEMBERS WERE CALLED
TO DUTY OVER THE YEARS TO
FIGHT THE GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR
IN IRAQ, AND AFGHANISTAN.
40 WITH VERMONT TIES WERE
KILLED IN COMBAT, DOZENS WERE
INJURED, AND HUNDREDS MORE
SUFFERED INVISIBLE WOUNDS,
LIKE POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS
DISORDER.
AND A CHANNEL 3 NEWS
INVESTIGATION UNCOVERED A NEW
BATTLE FOR VETS WHO MADE IT
HOME.
THE HEALTH CONSEQUENCES FROM
BURN PITS IN WAR ZONES.
THE BURN PITS ARE MASSIVE
OPEN-AIR TRASH FIRES BURNING
ALL DAY AND ALL NIGHT.
SOLDIERS BREATHING IN THE
SMOKE THAT HUNG OVER THE
BASES.
IN THEM, EVERYTHING WAS
BURNED, TRASH, MEDICAL WASTE,
BODY PARTS, HUMAN WASTE,
METALS, TIRES.
THERE WERE NO LANDFILLS, NO
INFRASTRUCTURE TO DEAL WITH
WASTE IN THE MIDDLE OF
MAKESHIFT CITIES IN WAR ZONES.
IT'S GONE ON FOR YEARS WITH
THOUSANDS OF U.S. MILITARY
MEMBERS EXPOSED.
OF THE 19 PEOPLE IN THE
VERMONT MILITARY POLICE UNIT
ALONE, 3 GOT PROSTATE CANCER,
TWO DIED, INCLUDING SERGEANT
MAJOR MIKE CRAM.
SEVERAL HAVE EARLY SIGNS OF
CANCER.
OTHERS HAVE UNKNOWN ILLNESSES
AND GROWTHS DOCTORS HAVEN'T
SEEN BEFORE.
VERMONT ALSO LOST THE NUMBER
TWO AT THE VERMONT NATIONAL
GUARD, BRIGADIER MICHAEL
HESTON.
CHANNEL 3 NEWS SPOKE WITH THE
GENERAL SHORTLY BEFORE HE LOST
HIS BATTLE WITH CANCER.
HESTON TOLD US THE BURN PITS
CAUSED HIS CANCER, TOO.
>> AND THE WIVES OF BOTH MEN,
PAT CRAM AND JUNE HESTON, JOIN
ME NOW TO DISCUSS HOW THEY
CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR
AWARENESS ABOUT THE BURN PITS,
AND TO RAISE MONEY FOR CANCER
ORGANIZATIONS.
GOOD MORNING TO BOTH OF YOU
>> GOOD MORNING.
>> GOOD MORNING.
>> Darren: LET'S TALK ABOUT
YOUR HUSBANDS, IN ADDITION TO
THEIR MILITARY SERVICE, BOTH
WERE INVOLVED IN LAW
ENFORCEMENT.
GIVE US A BACKGROUND.
>> MIKE STARTED WITH THE
MILTON POLICE DEPARTMENT, FROM
THERE HE FINISHED HIS CAREER
AT WINOOSKI AS A LIEUTENANT.
SO HE WAS PROBABLY 30 YEARS IN
LAW ENFORCEMENT.
>> Darren: MICHAEL?
>> MY MIKE SERVED WITH THE
VERMONT STATE POLICE FOR 26
YEARS.
HE HAD A LONG CAREER WITH A
LOT OF DIFFERENT DUTIES DURING
THAT TIME.
>> Darren: AND BEFORE MIKE
CRAM PASSED, YOU FOLKS SET UP
THE 919 FOUNDATION.
TELL US THE SIGNIFICANCE, A,
OF THE NUMBER, AND WHAT THE
ORGANIZATION IS.
>> MIKE'S CALL NUMBER IN
WINOOSKI WAS 919, AND WHEN WE
REALIZED THAT HE WASN'T GOING
TO HAVE ANY MORE TREATMENTS,
WE CHOSE TO TAKE HIS LIFE
INSURANCE POLICY FROM THE
WINOOSKI PD AND START AN
ORGANIZATION AND WE CALLED IT
THE 919 FOUNDATION.
AND HE WAS VERY ADAMANT THAT
IT BE THE MONEY BE USED FOR
CANCER COMFORT.
HE HAD SEEN KIDS WHEN HE WAS
BEING TREATED.
THEY WERE SO-Y AND SO FULL OF
LIFE -- HAPPY, AND HE ADMIRED
THAT.
WE THOUGHT THAT WAS THE
PERFECT ORGANIZATION TO RAISE
MONEY FOR.
>> KIDS CAN JUST BE KIDS
THERE.
>> KIDS CAN BE KIDS AT CAMP.
>> YES.
FORGET ABOUT CANCER FOR A BIT.
LET'S TALK ABOUT ANOTHER
FUNDRAISER BY 14 STAR, THIS IS
A VETERAN-OWNED BREWERY IN ST.
ALBANS, THEY CAME OUT WITH A
919 CAN IN HONOR OF MIKE, AND
TO SUPPORT THE ORGANIZATION.
TELL US ABOUT THAT.
>> YES.
WE PARTNERED WITH 14 STAR
ANDREA, AND HER BROTHER STEVE,
TO DO A FUNDRAISER, AND WE'RE
VERY CONSCIOUS OF THE DATES
THAT WE DO THINGS, SO WE
WANTED VETERAN'S DAY TO BE THE
LAUNCH.
IT WAS VERY SUCCESSFUL.
THE WEATHER WAS HORRIBLE, BUT
WE STILL GOT A REALLY GOOD
CREW TO COME OUT.
SGL AND THE MONEY FOR THAT
WILL GO TO CANCER CAMP.
>> YES.
SGL THIS PAST SUMMER A
MEMORIAL WALKWAY WAS SET UP AT
THE VETERANS CEMETERY IN HONOR
OF GENERAL HESTON.
TELL US ABOUT THAT, AND WHAT
DO YOU THINK HE WOULD THINK
ABOUT THAT?
FRJTS I THINK THAT HE WOULD --
>> I THINK THAT HE WOULD BE
TRULY HUMBLED.
HE WASN'T ONE FOR A LOT OF
ACCOLADES, BUT HE WOULD BE
VERY HONORED THAT THEY WOULD
NAME A WALKWAY FOR HIM AT THE
CEMETERY THAT HE OVERSAW FOR
SO MANY YEARS.
>> Darren: AND I KNOW THAT
THIS IS A DIFFICULT TIME
BECAUSE THIS IS THE ONE-YEAR
ANNIVERSARY.
FRJTS IT IS THE ONE-YEAR
ANNIVERSARY.
>> Darren: ARE YOU BOTH
CONVINCED STILL THAT THE BURN
PITS WERE THE CAUSE OF YOUR
HUSBANDS' DEATHS?
>> ABSOLUTELY.
>> YES.
FOR MIKE IT HAS BEEN
CONFIRMED.
HE APPLIED FOR
SERVICE-CONNECTED DISABILITY
THROUGH THE DOD AND THROUGH
THE VA.
HE WAS DENIED THROUGH THE DOD,
BECAUSE YOU ONLY HAVE 180 DAYS
FROM QUALIFIED DUTY TO APPLY.
BUT HE DID RECEIVE
SERVICE-CONNECTED DISABILITY
FROM THE VA FOR HIS BURN PIT
EXPOSURE WHICH CAUSED CANCER.
>> Darren: PAT, YOU ARE STILL
FIGHTING FOR THIS.
>> WE ARE STILL FIGHTING.
OUR APPEAL RIGHT NOW IS THAT
VETERANS AFFAIRS IN
WASHINGTON, DC.
>> Darren: THERE HAS BEEN SOME
ACTION ON THIS AS WE'VE
REPORTED, VERMONT PASSED A
LAW, YOU KNOW, SMALL STEPS, IN
ACKNOWLEDGING THESE BURN PITS
COULD BE LIKELY CAUSING THESE
ILLNESSES.
THERE WAS A MOVE IN CONGRESS
TO GET THIS QUALIFIED AS A
DISABILITY.
CONGRESSMAN WELCH WON, PUSHING
THIS, PUSHING THIS.
IS ENOUGH BEING DONE?
I -- CONGRESSMAN WELCH IS ONE
PUSHING THIS.
IS THERE MORE DEVELOPMENT ON
THIS?
HE
>> THERE IS MORE.
CURRENTLY THERE'S 14 DIFFERENT
PIECES OF LEGISLATION BEING
PROPOSED FEDERALLY, AND NONE
OF IT HAS MOVED VERY QUICKLY,
BUT BECAUSE JON STEWART, WHO
HAS TAKEN ON THE FIGHT FOR THE
911 FIRST RESPONDERS WITH JOHN
P FEEL FROM THE FEEL GOOD
FOUNDATION, THEY WERE
SUCCESSFUL IN GETTING THAT
BENEFIT FOR THE FIRST
RESPONDERS EXTENDED TO 2092.
SO NOW THEY'VE JOINED THIS
FIGHT, BECAUSE IT IS
ESSENTIALLY THE SAME SORT OF
THING.
AND SO JON STEWART WENT TO
WASHINGTON, THERE WERE A GROUP
OF CONGRESSIONAL STAFF,
DSOAESHGS OTHER NON-PROFITS --
DSO'S, OTHER NON-PROFITS
FOCUSED ON BURN PIT EXPOSURE
AND OTHER TOXIC EXPOSURE, AND
WHAT IT WILL DO IS GET THE
GROUP TO COME TOGETHER AND
BUILD COMPREHENSIVE
LEGISLATION THAT MEETS
EVERYONE'S NEEDS, AND THE GOAL
IN THE END, ONCE THIS IS
WRITTEN, IS TO PROPOSE IT IN
SEPTEMBER, BUT TO HAVE IT,
THAT IT WOULD BE PRESUMPTIVE,
THAT IF YOU SERVED ANY TIME IN
9/11, YOU WERE EXPOSED.
IF IT WASN'T BURN PITS, AT
WHAT TIME CHEMICALS YOUR
UNIFORMS WERE SOAKED IN, OR IT
WAS THE MEDICATION YOU WERE
GIVEN FORMAL AREA.
THERE WERE A -- FOR MALARIA.
A LOT OF INCIDENCE TO BEING
EXPOSED TO TOXINS WHILE
SERVING OVERSEAS.
>> Darren: THANK YOU FOR YOUR
TIME, YOUR HUSBAND'S SERVICE
AND YOUR SERVICE AS WOMEN.
>> THANK YOU.
>> THANK YOU FOR WATCHING,
EVERYBODY.
HAVE A GOOD DAY.
Captioning provided by
Caption Associates, LLC
captionassociates.com
Captioning provided by
Caption Associates, LLC
captionassociates.com
>> Darren: AND GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE,
I'M DARREN PERRON.
ON CHANNEL 3, "YOU CAN QUOTE
ME," CONGRESSMAN WELCH
RESPONDS TO BOMBSHELL
TESTIMONY DURING THE
IMPEACHMENT HEARING.
ALSO, THE WIVES OF TWO MEN WHO
LIKELY DIED FROM EXPOSURE TO
BURN PITS IN WAR ZONES JOIN ME
TO DISCUSS HOW THEY ARE
RAISING AWARENESS, MONEY FOR
CANCER CAUSES, AND HONORING
THEIR HUSBAND'S MEMORIES.
PLUS, SPOTTING SCAMS AROUND
THE HOLIDAYS.
WE DID THE DIGGING SO YOU CAN
BE SURE YOUR DONATIONS GO TO
LEGITIMATE CHARITIES.
AND WE FOLLOWED THE MONEY IN
VERMONT.
AND THAT'S WHERE WE BEGIN THIS
MORNING.
WHEN IT COMES TO COLLECTING
CASH, HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT
YOUR MONEY IS ACTUALLY GOING
TO THE CAUSE YOU WANT TO
SUPPORT?
OUR INVESTIGATION REVEALED
PAID FUNDRAISERS FOR-PROFIT
COMPANIES THAT ARE HIRED BY
CHARITIES TO RAISE MONEY BY
PHONE CALLS OR MAILINGS ARE
LOOSELY REGULATED.
THEY CAN KEEP UP TO 100% OF
DONATED MONEY.
WE DISCOVERED MILLIONS OF
DOLLARS AMERICANS DONATE TO
GOOD CAUSES NEVER GET TO THE
PROGRAMS THEMSELVES, AND
INSTEAD PAY FOR THE
FUNDRAISING.
CAT VIGLIENZONI JOINS US LIVE
IN THE STUDIO WITH WHAT SHE
LEARNED ABOUT FUNDRAISING
TACTICS IN VERMONT.
CAT VIGLIENZONI TO BE CLEAR,
THIS IS NOT TO DISCOURAGE YOU
FROM DONATING, MERELY TO MAKE
SURE YOUR CHARITY OF CHOICE
GETS TO KEEP AS MUCH OF YOUR
DONATION AS POSSIBLE.
FORTUNATELY VERMONT MADE THAT
INFORMATION EASY TO FIND OUT,
UNLIKE OTHER STATES, VERMONT
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE
TRACKS IN DETAIL WHO HAS BEEN
PAID FOR RAISE MONEY HERE AND
HOW MUCH IS GOING TO CHAIR I.
THE GOAL WITH THIS DATABASE IS
TO HELP YOU MAKE INFORMED
DECISIONS WHERE YOU GIVE YOUR
MONEY.
I SPOKE TO LOCAL CHARITIES FOR
FIND OUT WHEN THEY WOULD DO
THE FUNDRAISING THEMSELVES AND
WHEN THEY WOULD HIRE
PROFESSIONALS.
700 ENVELOPES.
>> WE DID 3,000 THE LAST ONE.
>> Cat: STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS
EXTENT -- EXTENT SPENT AN
EVENING SEALING LETTERS TO
POTENTIAL DONORS.
NON-PROFIT MAKES SURE THEY GET
THE MOST BANG FOR THEIR BUCK
BY DOING ALMOST ALL THEIR
OUTREACH IN-HOUSE.
>> WE SAVE SO MUCH MONEY BY
DOING MORE OF THE WORK HERE.
IT IS REALLY JUST PAPER AND
PRINTING, AND OUR TIME THAT IT
IS KIND OF FUN, TOO.
>> Cat: FUNDRAISING IS THE
BREAD AND BUTTER.
THREE QUARTERS OF ANNUAL
REVENUE COMES FROM CHARITY
SUPPORT.
PEOPLE WHO SEE ANIMALS LIKE
MOLLY AND WANT TO FIND THEM
FOREVER HOMES.
MOST PEOPLE GIVE DURING THE
HOLIDAY SEASON.
RIGHT NOW THEY ARE GETTING
THEIR NAME IN FRONT OF EYES
AND WALLETS TO COMPETE FOR
DONATION DOLLARS.
>> THIS MAILING IS SO
SUPPORTERS, HIGHLIGHTING ALL
THE AMAZING THINGS WE DO WITH
THE DONATION, HOPEFULLY
ENCOURAGING THEM TO GIVE
AGAIN.
>> WE WANT EVERY DOLLAR TO
COUNT.
WE WANT EVERY VERMONTER IN
NEED TO BE SERVED.
>> CHRIS CURTIS IS THE CHIEF
OF THE PUBLIC PROTECTION SDI
DIVISION OF THE VERMONT
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE, IN
CHARGE OF MAKING SURE YOU KNOW
WHERE YOUR MONEY IS REALLY
GOING.
>> SOME OF THEM THEY DIDN'T
RAISE ANYTHING, SO THERE WAS
NOTHING PAID.
>> Cat: HE SHOWS US THIS
DATABASE, WHICH TRACKS PAID
FUNDRAISERS, COMPANIES HIRED
TO BRING IN DONATIONS.
IT SHOWS YOU HOW MUCH OF YOUR
MONEY IS GUARANTEED TO GO TO
THE CHARITY, AND HOW MUCH
ACTUALLY DID.
>> VERMONTERS CAN LOOK AT THAT
FOR THEMSELVES AND MAKE A
DETERMINATION WHETHER OR IF
THEY WANT TO GIVE, OR GIVE TO
THE ORGANIZATION DIRECTLY, AND
BYPASS THE PAID FUNDRAISING
OPERATION.
>> Cat: PAID FUNDRAISING IS
LEGAL AND LEGITIMATE, BUT ONE
TREND CURTIS SAID HE NOTICES
WHEN HE LOOKS AT THEIR DATA
IS, THERE ARE FEWER OF THEM.
THERE'S BEEN A 60% DROP JUST
IN THE PAST FOUR YEARS.
OF THE 14 PAID FUNDRAISING
COMPANIES REGISTERED HERE NOW,
ALMOST ALL OF THEIR 108
CAMPAIGNS ARE FOR NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS.
>> PEOPLE HAVE LEARNED THAT
THEY CAN DO THIS BETTER FOR
THEMSELVES USING A GREAT
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR AS PART
OF THEIR TEAM AND NOT HAVE TO
HIRE OUT OF HOUSE.
>> Cat: BUT WE DID SEE A FEW
LOCAL NON-PROFITS ON THE LIST.
INCLUDING THE VERMONT POLICE
K-9 ASSOCIATION, THE
UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT MEDICAL
CENTER, VERMONT PBS, AND
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT.
>> THERE ARE A LOT OF
COMPETING DEMANDS FOR DOLLARS,
EVEN WITHIN THE SPECIAL
OLYMPICS MOVEMENT.
>> Cat: SPECIAL OLYMPICS
VERMONT CEO SAYS THEIR MISSION
CENTERS ON INCLUSIVITY, FROM
ATHLETE EMPLOYMENT TO UNIFIED
SPORTS TEAMS, TO OTHER EFFORTS
THAT ENRICH THE LIVES OF
PEOPLE WITH AND WITHOUT
INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES.
BUT THOSE PROGRAMS COME AT A
COST.
THEY HAVE TO RAISE ALMOST
EVERY DOLLAR IN THEIR $1.3
MILLION BUDGET.
[ CHEERING ]
THE PENGUIN PLUNGE BRINGS IN A
FRIGID 40% OF THAT.
BUT ABOUT 20 TO 25% COMES IN
DURING THE GIVING SEASON.
RIGHT NOW, THEY ARE REACHING
OUT TO DONORS THROUGH
MAILINGS, PHONE CALLS, AND
MORE.
SOME HAPPENS FROM THEIR SOUTH
BURLINGTON OFFICE; OTHERS
THROUGH A NATIONAL CAMPAIGN.
>> I THINK BOTH ARE EFFECTIVE.
ONE OF THE THINGS WE KNOW
ABOUT ASKING AND GIVING IS
THAT IT TAKES MULTIPLE TRIES
IN MULTIPLE DIFFERENT WAYS.
>> Cat: BUT HIRING
PROFESSIONALS COMES AT A COST.
AND WE SAW THE AMOUNT OF PAID
FUNDRAISING COMPANY KEPT
VARIED WIDELY.
DIAL AMERICA MARKETING
INCORPORATED PROMISED AND GAVE
JUST 10% OF THE 18,000 THEY
RAISED IN A YEAR.
HERITAGE COMPANY INCORPORATED
COLLECTED ABOUT 75,000 OVER
THREE YEARS.
50 TO 70% OF THAT WENT TO
CHAIR I.
>> ON YOUR MARK, SET.
>> TO KEEP ALL YOUR MONEY
HELPING ATHLETES, SEE SAYS
REACH OUT AT THEIR OFFICE
DIRECTLY, OR CONTRIBUTE TO ONE
OF THEIR EVENTS LIKE THE
PLUNGE.
THEY GET TO KEEP ALL OF WHAT
THEY RAISE THERE.
>> WE ARE GRATEFUL FOR EVERY
DOLLAR, BECAUSE, YOU KNOW,
EACH ONE MAKES A DIFFERENCE.
>> Cat: HOW DO YOU KNOW IF
YOU'RE DEALING WITH A
NON-PROFIT DIRECTLY OR WITH A
PAID FUNDRAISER?
CURTIS SAID IF YOU ARE ON THE
PHONE, JUST ASK.
AND ALSO, ASK HOW MUCH OF YOUR
DONATION IS GOING TO THE
CHARITY ITSELF.
IT IS A RED FLAG IF THEY CAN'T
OR WON'T TELL YOU.
AND ALSO, CALL THE NON-PROFIT
DIRECTLY AND JUST ASK IF THEY
ARE FUNDRAISING.
ALSO MAKE SURE YOU AREN'T
GETTING SCAMMED BY A FAKE
FUNDRAISER.
THEY ARE OUT THERE.
DARREN?
>> Darren: THANK YOU.
STAND BY.
NEXT WE'LL DIG DEEPER INTO HOW
YOU CAN AVOID THOSE SCAMS,
PLUS, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
JOINS US WITH SOME ADVICE AS
WELL.
AND LATER, MILITARY BURN PITS
MAKING SOLDIERS SICK.
STILL AHEAD, THE WIVES OF TWO
VERMONTERS WHO DIED JOIN US,
HOPING CONTINUED AWARENESS
WILL SAVE LIVES.
DON'T GO AWAY.
WHILE SOME OF THE SHAM
CHARITIES THAT CLAIM TO HELP
VETERANS OR FIRST RESPONDERS
HAVE BEEN SHUT DOWN OVER THE
PAST COUPLE YEARS, THE PAID
FUNDRAISING COMPANIES THAT
RAISE MONEY FOR THEM ARE STILL
ACTIVE.
AND STILL COLLECTING MONEY.
IN THE NAME OF VETERANS,
POLICE AND FIREFIGHTERS.
CAT VIGLIENZONI JOINS US AGAIN
WITH WHAT YOU NEED TO ASK TO
MAKE SURE YOUR MONEY GETS TO A
LEGITIMATE CHAIR I.
>> Cat: IT'S TRICKY.
YOU ARE FACED WITH A CALLER OR
FLYER IN THE MAIL TUGGING AT
YOUR HEARTSTRINGS.
THEY TELL YOU THAT HELPING
VETERANS, POLICE, KIDS OR
ANIMALS.
THEY WANT YOU TO GIVE YOUR
MONEY TO HELP.
THAT'S ALL WELL AND GOOD, IF
THE CHARITY IS LEGIT.
>> YOU ALWAYS WANT TO BE
CAREFUL.
>> Cat: CHRIS CURTIS WITH THE
PUBLIC PROTECTION DIVISION OF
THE VERMONT ATTORNEY GENERAL'S
OFFICE SAID WHILE YOU SHOULD
EXPECT TO GET SOME KIND OF
LETTER OR CARD, EVEN A PHONE
CALL DURING THE NEXT COUPLE
MONTHS, YOU SHOULD NOT ASSUME
THAT JUST BECAUSE IT'S A
PROFESSIONAL PAMPHLET, OR A
GOOD SALES PITCH, THAT IT'S
LEGITIMATE.
OR EVEN THAT IT IS ACTUALLY
REPRESENTING THE CHARITY IT
SATISFIES IT IS.
>> THERE CAN BE IMPOSTER
SCAMS, WHERE SOMEBODY IS
IMPERSONATING A NON-PROFIT
ORGANIZATION.
>> Cat: THE BEST WAY TO AVOID
PARTING WITH YOUR MONEY TO A
SCAMMER?
DO A LITTLE DIGGING.
ASK QUESTIONS LIKE WHO THE
PERSON IS, WHAT THE CHARITY
IS, WHERE IT'S LOCATED, HOW
YOUR DONATION WILL BE USED,
AND IF THEY ARE A PAID
FUNDRAISER.
THEN DOUBLE CHECK THAT
INFORMATION YOURSELF.
BE WARY OF ANYONE WHO
PRESSURES YOU INTO GIVING
MONEY RIGHT AWAY, ESPECIALLY
THROUGH CASH MAILINGS OR WIRE
TRANSFERS.
IF YOU GET A LETTER THANKING
YOU FOR A DONATION YOU ALREADY
MADE, AND YOU KNOW YOU DIDN'T,
IT IS ALMOST CERTAINLY A SCAM,
AND BE EXTRA CAREFUL WITH
EMAILS ASKING YOU FOR MONEY
BECAUSE THEY MIGHT NOT BE
SAFE.
THE BEST WAY TO AVOID SCAMMERS
IS TO REACH OUT TO YOUR
CHARITY OF CHOICE DIRECTLY AND
ASK HOW YOU CAN SEND THEM
MONEY.
>> REALLY, CALL AND VERIFY AND
AUTHENTICATE THE NON-PROFITS
YOU ARE GIVING TO.
THAT'S THE NUMBER ONE THING.
>> Cat: NON-PROFITS WE SPOKE
WITH AGREE.
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT SAID
THEY ARE MORE THAN HAPPY TO
TAKE YOUR CALLS AND TALK TO
YOU ABOUT THE PROGRAMS THEY
OFFER AND WHERE YOUR DONATION
WILL BE USED.
>> BEING REALLY CLEAR AND
EXPLICIT ABOUT EXACTLY WHAT WE
DO IS HUGE.
>> Cat: AT THE HUMANE SOCIETY
OF CHITTENDEN COUNTY, IF YOU
REACH OUT TO THEM DIRECTLY,
YOU GET A PERSONAL RESPONSE
BACK.
>> PERSONALLY I SIGN AND WRITE
LETTERS TO EVERY PERSON WHO
MAKES A GIFT OF ANY AMOUNT.
THERE IS NO GIFT TOO SMALL.
>> Darren: CAT JOINS ME NOW
ALONG WITH THE ATTORNEY
GENERAL, T.J. DONOVAN.
GOOD MORNING TO BOTH OF YOU.
>> Cat: GOOD MORNING.
>> Darren: LET'S START WITH
WHAT IS AVAILABLE FOR
RESOURCES FROM YOUR OFFICE, SO
THAT FOLKS CAN LOOK TO SEE IF
THEY ARE BEING SCAMMED.
>> SURE.
THE FIRST THING PEOPLE SHOULD
DO IS GO TO AGOVERMONT.GOV, SO
THEY CAN ACCESS THE REPORT
THAT CAT CHRONICD ABOUT WHO
THE PAID FUNDRAISERS ARE.
THE NEXT TOOL AVAILABLE IS
KNOWLEDGE, AND THAT MEANS
ASKING QUESTIONS.
WHEN YOU GET THAT CALL OR YOU
GET THAT SOLICITATION, ASK THE
QUESTION.
ARE YOU A PAID FUND RAISER?
THE SECOND FOLLOW-UP QUESTION
IS THIS: WHAT ARE YOU TAKING,
WHAT IS THE PERCENT?
IF THEY DON'T TELL YOU THAT,
ASK US, BECAUSE I THINK
VERMONTERS ARE GENEROUS, THEY
GIVE THROUGHOUT THE YEAR, BUT
ESPECIALLY OVER THE HOLIDAYS,
AND THEY EXPECT THAT THEIR
MONEY IS GOING TO THE CHARITY
TO ADDRESS THE CAUSE THEY
BELIEVE IN, NOT TO A PAID
FUNDRAISER.
>> Darren: YOU MENTIONED TO ME
WHILE WE WERE CHATTING THERE
ARE OTHER RESOURCES, TOO.
>> Cat: COUPLE QUESTIONS I GOT
WERE FROM PEOPLE WHO LIVE
OUTSIDE OF VERMONT AND WANTED
TO KNOW WHAT KIND OF RESOURCES
WERE AVAILABLE ON A NATIONAL
LEVEL.
THE BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU HAS
A CHARITY SECTION, ALSO
CHARITY NAVIGATOR, A PRETTY
GOOD WEBSITE, TOO, ESPECIALLY
DEALING WITH, YOU KNOW, IF YOU
ARE OUT OF STATE AND DEALING
WITH SOMETHING LIKE THIS.
>> Darren: ATTORNEY GENERAL,
WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON SCAMS
YOUR OFFICE HEARS ABOUT DURING
THE HOLIDAY SEASON?
>> WELL, THE MOST COMMON SCAM
THAT WE SEE YEAR-ROUND IS
GOING TO BE THE IRS SCAM.
AND ANYTHING THAT'S GOING TO
PULL ON PEOPLE'S HEARTSTRINGS,
WHETHER IT'S ABOUT CHILDREN,
WHETHER IT'S ABOUT MILITARY
VETERANS, WHETHER IT'S BEEN
ANIMALS, CERTAINLY YOU ARE
GOING TO SEE THAT, OVER THE
HOLIDAYS.
AND I THINK PEOPLE SHOULD JUST
BE CAREFUL.
OF COURSE WE WANT PEOPLE TO
GIVE, AND VERMONTERS BY AND
LARGE ARE AN INCREDIBLY
GENEROUS GROUP.
LET'S JUST ASK THE QUESTION, I
THINK, YOU KNOW, I UNDERSTAND
CHARITIES UTILIZING PAID
FUNDRAISERS, BUT WE ARE A
SMALL STATE.
IT IS A CALL TO ACTION FOR
VERMONTERS TO VOLUNTEER THEIR
TIME TO PUT THOSE STAMPS ON
THE ENVELOPES AND DO THOSE
PHONATHONS THEMSELVES, BECAUSE
THAT'S HOW MOST LOCAL
CHARITIES OPERATE IN THE
STATE.
I THINK WE ARE PRETTY LUCKY.
>> Darren: CAT, DURING YOUR
INVESTIGATION DID ANY OF THESE
NON-PROFITS REVEAL HOW THEY
ARE MOVING AWAY FROM PAID
FUNDRAISING?
>> Cat: RIGHT.
CHRIS CURTIS MENTIONED ONE OF
THEM, HAVING A GOOD
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR ON STAFF,
WHO CAN DEAL WITH, YOU KNOW,
BOTH THE FUNDRAISING ASPECT,
ALSO THEY MIGHT DEAL WITH YOUR
SOCIAL MEDIA PREPS AS WELL.
THAT'S ACTUALLY SOMETHING
WE -- PRESENCE AS WELL.
WE HEARD FROM NON-PROFITS,
STARTING TO LEVERAGE SOCIAL
MEDIA TO GET THE WORD OUT TO
PEOPLE WHO ALREADY EXPRESSED
AN INTEREST IN THEIR MISSION
AND IN WHAT THEY DO.
ALSO, YOU KNOW, YOU SAW THIS
AT THE HUMANE SOCIETY, GETTING

VOLUNTEERS BOARD TO STUFF
ANIMALS, OR MAYBE MAKING A
PHONE CALL, OR TALKING TO
THEIR FRIENDS.
WE'VE SEEN A LOT MORE OF THESE
EVENTS POPPING UP, TOO.
WE HAVE THE PLUNGE, THE BIG
ONE FOR SPECIAL OLYMPICS
VERMONT, HUMANE SOCIETY HAS
SEVERAL THROUGHOUT THE YEAR,
SEVERAL WALKS, PURSES FOR PAWS
COMING UP AT THE BEGINNING OF
NEXT YEAR.
AND THOSE ARE ALWAYS TO GET
PEOPLE INTERACTIVE WITH THE
CHARITY, AND ENGAGING, BECAUSE
ONE THING I DID HEAR FROM
SPECIAL OLYMPICS VERMONT, MANY
OF THEIR DONORS ACTUALLY START
AS VOLUNTEERS.
SO YOU GET PEOPLE IN THAT WAY,
AND THROUGH EVENTS THAT CAN
CAUSE THEM TO, YOU KNOW,
REALLY GET INVOLVED WITH YOUR
CHARITY IN A BIGGER WAY.
ALSO, PEOPLE ARE RAISING
MONEY, IT IS EASIER FOR PEOPLE
TO ASK THEIR OPEN FRIENDS FOR
MONEY AS OPPOSED TO YOU HAVING
TO MAKE THE EXTRA CONNECTION.
>> Darren: SURE.
WHAT ABOUT LAW ENFORCEMENT.
WHAT CAN YOUR OFFICE DO ABOUT
GOING AFTER THESE PEOPLE?
THE COURT: THERE'S A COUPLE
THINGS --
>>>.
>> IT CAN BE CRIMINAL OR
CIVIL.
YOU HAVE CRIMINAL PENALTIES.
UNDER A CONSUMER PROTECTION
LAW, ANYBODY THAT IS ACTING IN
WHAT WE CALL AN UNFAIR OR
DECEPTIVE ACT IS CERTAINLY
ACTIONABLE BY VERMONT AND THE
ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE.
BUT I THINK WHEN WE TALK ABOUT
THESE ISSUES, IT IS RAISING
AWARENESS ABOUT SCAMS IS
ALWAYS THE BEST DEFENSE.
SHARING THESE STORIES,
BRINGING TRANSPARENCY INTO
THESE TRANSACTIONS, BECAUSE
PEOPLE WANT TO GIVE.
THEY WANT TO DO THE RIGHT
THING.
THEY JUST DON'T WANT TO MAKE
SURE THAT EITHER 75% OR 100%
IN SOME CASES OF THEIR MONEY
IS GOING TO THE PAID
FUNDRAISER AND NOT THE
CHARITY.
TRANSPARENCY AWARENESS IS
CRITICALLY IMPORTANT.
IN THE EGREGIOUS CASES WE HAVE
TOOLS CIVILLY AND CRIMINALLY
IF WE NEED THEM.
>> Darren: WHEN YOU LOOKED AT
THE LIST OF PAID FUNDRAISERS,
ANYTHING STAND OUT?
>> Cat: A LOT OF NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS DOING PAID
FUNDRAISING IN VERMONT.
CANCER SOCIETY, PLANNED
PARENTHOOD, KIDS WISH NETWORK,
DIFFERENT LAW ENFORCEMENT
FUNDS, ANIMAL ADVOCACY
ORGANIZATIONS, ET CETERA.
REALLY ALSO, DARREN, IT WAS A
LOT OF UNIVERSITIES ON THE
LIST.
I MEAN, SO MANY COLLEGES AND
UNIVERSITIES ON THAT LIST.
THAT STOOD OUT TO ME THE MOST.
YOU KNOW, IN A WAY, IT KIND OF
MAKES SENSE THAT THE NATIONAL
ORGANIZATIONS WOULD MORE USE
PAID FUND RAZE RAISERS IN
VERMONT, THEY DON'T HAVE THE
LOCAL PRESENCE TO DO THE
OUTREACH IN THE COMMUNITY THEY
WOULD NEED TO BE ABLE TO GET
DONATIONS.
THEY HAVE TO HIRE SOMEONE TO
DO THAT JOB.
>> Darren: FROM YOUR
PERSPECTIVE, ATTORNEY GENERAL,
IS THIS FRUSTRATING TO SEE HOW
LITTLE CAN ACTUALLY GO TO A
NON-PROFIT?
>> ABSOLUTELY.
THAT'S A CONVERSATION WE HAVE
TO HAVE IN OUR STATE, YOU
KNOW, AS PEOPLE BECOME MORE
AWARE OF THIS ISSUE, AND,
LOOK, I WANT TO BE CLEAR,
THERE ARE SOME LEGITIMATE PAID
FUNDRAISERS.
LET'S BE CLEAR ABOUT THAT.
BUT UNFORTUNATELY, AS WE SEE
IN ALL ASPECTS, IF THERE IS
ANY ROOM FOR PEOPLE TO RIP
PEOPLE OFF, PEOPLE TAKE
ADVANTAGE.
I THINK THIS IS A CONVERSATION
THAT PERHAPS WE HAVE TO HAVE
IN THE LEGISLATURE, IT IS A
CONVERSATION THAT PERHAPS YOU
HAVE TO HAVE AS CAT SAID, THIS
IS A NATIONAL -- THESE ARE
NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS.
PERHAPS AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL
TO MAKE SURE THERE ARE CAPS ON
THIS.
BECAUSE I THINK IF YOU ASK ANY
VERMONTER THAT GAVE MONEY AND
THEY LEARNED THAT EITHER HALF
OR A THIRD OR MORE, I MEAN,
THE FACT THAT 100% --
>> Cat: SOME SAID 1%.
THAT WAS A HUGE NUMBER ON THE
LIST THAT YOU HAVE ON YOUR
WEBSITE, A LOT OF THEM SAID 1%
IS GOING TO CHARITY.
YOU KNOW, A LITTLE BIT LIKE,
WHOA.
>> RIGHT.
I THINK THIS IS AN ISSUE, AND
YOU ARE GOING TO SEE MORE
SCRUTINY, YOU ARE GOING TO SEE
MORE CONVERSATIONS AT THE
LEGISLATIVE LEVEL TO SAY
SHOULD THERE BE MORE
REGULATION HERE TO MAKE SURE
VERMONTERS' MONEY IS GOING TO
THE PLACES THAT THEY INTENDED
IT TO GO.
NO VERMONTER INTENDED IT TO GO
TO THE PAID FUNDRAISER, THEY
INTENDED IT TO GO TO THE CHAIR
I.
>> Darren: ON THE BOOKS IS
THERE ANYTHING PAID
FUNDRAISERS CAN OR CANNOT DO?
>> IT IS GOVERNORSED BY
VERMONT, AND CONSUMERS,
CHARITIES, REGULATES THE
SYSTEM, BUT IT IS A DECEPTIVE
ACT WHEN YOU LOOK AT IT.
I AM NOT SURE GIVEN OUR
CURRENT STATE OF THE LAW THAT
IT WOULD QUALIFY AS THAT.
I THINK TRANSPARENCY AND
DISCLOSURE ARE INCREDIBLY
IMPORTANT.
I THINK GIVING PEOPLE,
VERMONTERS, THE INFORMATION IS
ALWAYS THE BEST APPROACH TO
DEALING WITH THESE ISSUES,
BECAUSE VERMONTERS ARE SMART,
THEY UNDERSTAND WHAT THEY ARE
DOING.
GIVE THEM THE INFORMATION,
THEY WILL MAKE THE RIGHT
DECISION.
AS WE SAID, CALL THE CHARITY
DIRECTLY.
THIS IS A SMALL STATE.
PEOPLE KNOW WHO THE CHARITIES
ARE AND WHO THE VOLUNTEERS
ARE, THEY CAN GET THE MONEY
DIRECTLY TO THE CHARITY.
>> T.J. DONOVAN, THANK YOU FOR
YOUR INVESTIGATION.
APPRECIATE THAT.
>> Darren: COMING UP NEXT,
CONGRESSMAN WELCH ON THE
IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS AND
MILITARY WIDOWS CONTINUE TO
FIGHT FOR ACTION ON BURN PITS
IN WAR ZONES.
YOU'RE WATCHING CHANNEL 3'S
"YOU CAN QUOTE ME," AND WE ARE
BACK IN A MOMENT.
>>> WAS THERE A QUID PRO QUO?
AS I TESTIFIED PREVIOUSLY WITH
REGARD TO THE REQUESTED WHITE
HOUSE CALL AND THE WHITE HOUSE
MEETING, THE ANSWER IS YES.
>> Darren: PRESIDENT TRUMP'S
HAND-PICKED AMBASSADOR TO THE
EUROPEAN UNION SENT SHOCKWAVES
ACROSS THE U.S. CAPITOL,
CHANGING HIS STORY AND
DIRECTLY IMPLICATING THE
PRESIDENT IN THE PRESSURE
CAMPAIGN AGAINST UKRAINE.
GORDON SONDLAND TOLD CONGRESS
THERE WAS A QUID PRO QUO, AN
ATTEMPT TO TRADE MILITARY
FUNDING FOR AN INVESTIGATION
OF MR. TRUMP'S RIVALS, AND IT
WAS DONE AT THE DIRECTION OF
THE PRESIDENT.
VERMONT CONGRESSMAN PETER
WELCH SITS ON THE HOUSE
INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE WHICH
HELD THE IMPEACHMENT HEARINGS.
WELCH ALSO RAISED CONCERNS
AFTER INFORMATION CAME OUT
THAT RUSSIAN SPIES LIKELY
INTERCEPTED THE AMBASSADOR'S
CALL WITH PRESIDENT TRUMP.
OUR WASHINGTON REPORTER KYLE
MIDURA CAUGHT UP WITH THE
CONGRESSMAN RIGHT AFTER THE
HEARING.
>> THE CALL FROM SONDLAND
WHERE HE WAS TALKING TO THE
PRESIDENT ON A NON-SECURE
PHONE IN A RESTAURANT, THE
RUSSIANS WERE LISTENING.
THEY HAD CLEARLY BECOME AWARE
THAT THE WHITE HOUSE WAS
WITHHOLDING AID, AND PRESIDENT
ZELENSKY IN A VERY COMPROMISED
POSITION WHEN HE HAD THE
RUSSIANS AT HIS BORDER AND
ACROSS HIS BORDER IN UKRAINE.
SO THE REAL NATIONAL SECURITY
IMPLICATIONS HERE, AND I FEEL
THAT THERE WAS A LOSS OF LIFE
THAT WAS RELATED TO THE FACT
THAT THE RUSSIANS REALLY HAD
INFORMATION, I SUSPECT, FROM
THE UNSECURED PHONE CALLS.
>> THE PRESIDENT YESTERDAY
SAID I DON'T WANT ANYTHING
FROM UKRAINE, I NEVER WANTED
ANYTHING FROM UKRAINE.
THE REPUBLICANS HAVE ARGUED,
LOOK, WE DON'T HAVE ANYONE WHO
TESTIFIED WHO HEARD IT
STRAIGHT FROM THE HORSE'S
MOUTH, SO TO SPEAK.
HOW DO YOU RESPOND TO THAT?
>> SONDLAND HEARD IT, AND THE
FACT IS THE PRESIDENT SAID IT.
KEEP IN MIND, THIS ALL
STARTED, THIS WHOLE
INVESTIGATION STARTED WHEN
PEOPLE WHO WERE ON THE PHONE
CALL APPARENTLY TALKED TO THE
WHISTLEBLOWER.
THE WHISTLEBLOWER REPORT CAME
OUT.
THE PRESIDENT RELEASED THE
TRANSCRIPT OF THE CALL, AND IN
IT HE SAID HE WANTED A FAVOR.
AND THE FAVOR WAS CROWD STRIKE
HUNTER BIDEN AND VICE
PRESIDENT BIDEN.
HE WANTED THOSE
INVESTIGATIONS.
THAT'S DIRECT OUT OF THE MOUTH
OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED
STATES.
THE ULTIMATE QUESTION HERE IS
THE FACTS OF WHETHER WHAT HE
DID WAS USING PUBLIC OFFICE
FOR PRIVATE PERSONAL GAIN.
THERE'S OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE
THAT HE DID.
DAY DARE NORTH COUNTRY
CONGRESSMAN --
>> Darren: ELISE, WE ASKED THE
REPUBLICAN FOR AN INTERVIEW,
TOO, BUT SHE WAS UNAVAILABLE.
MORE THAN 3,000 VERMONT
MILITARY MEMBERS WERE CALLED
TO DUTY OVER THE YEARS TO
FIGHT THE GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR
IN IRAQ, AND AFGHANISTAN.
40 WITH VERMONT TIES WERE
KILLED IN COMBAT, DOZENS WERE
INJURED, AND HUNDREDS MORE
SUFFERED INVISIBLE WOUNDS,
LIKE POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS
DISORDER.
AND A CHANNEL 3 NEWS
INVESTIGATION UNCOVERED A NEW
BATTLE FOR VETS WHO MADE IT
HOME.
THE HEALTH CONSEQUENCES FROM
BURN PITS IN WAR ZONES.
THE BURN PITS ARE MASSIVE
OPEN-AIR TRASH FIRES BURNING
ALL DAY AND ALL NIGHT.
SOLDIERS BREATHING IN THE
SMOKE THAT HUNG OVER THE
BASES.
IN THEM, EVERYTHING WAS
BURNED, TRASH, MEDICAL WASTE,
BODY PARTS, HUMAN WASTE,
METALS, TIRES.
THERE WERE NO LANDFILLS, NO
INFRASTRUCTURE TO DEAL WITH
WASTE IN THE MIDDLE OF
MAKESHIFT CITIES IN WAR ZONES.
IT'S GONE ON FOR YEARS WITH
THOUSANDS OF U.S. MILITARY
MEMBERS EXPOSED.
OF THE 19 PEOPLE IN THE
VERMONT MILITARY POLICE UNIT
ALONE, 3 GOT PROSTATE CANCER,
TWO DIED, INCLUDING SERGEANT
MAJOR MIKE CRAM.
SEVERAL HAVE EARLY SIGNS OF
CANCER.
OTHERS HAVE UNKNOWN ILLNESSES
AND GROWTHS DOCTORS HAVEN'T
SEEN BEFORE.
VERMONT ALSO LOST THE NUMBER
TWO AT THE VERMONT NATIONAL
GUARD, BRIGADIER MICHAEL
HESTON.
CHANNEL 3 NEWS SPOKE WITH THE
GENERAL SHORTLY BEFORE HE LOST
HIS BATTLE WITH CANCER.
HESTON TOLD US THE BURN PITS
CAUSED HIS CANCER, TOO.
>> AND THE WIVES OF BOTH MEN,
PAT CRAM AND JUNE HESTON, JOIN
ME NOW TO DISCUSS HOW THEY
CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR
AWARENESS ABOUT THE BURN PITS,
AND TO RAISE MONEY FOR CANCER
ORGANIZATIONS.
GOOD MORNING TO BOTH OF YOU
>> GOOD MORNING.
>> GOOD MORNING.
>> Darren: LET'S TALK ABOUT
YOUR HUSBANDS, IN ADDITION TO
THEIR MILITARY SERVICE, BOTH
WERE INVOLVED IN LAW
ENFORCEMENT.
GIVE US A BACKGROUND.
>> MIKE STARTED WITH THE
MILTON POLICE DEPARTMENT, FROM
THERE HE FINISHED HIS CAREER
AT WINOOSKI AS A LIEUTENANT.
SO HE WAS PROBABLY 30 YEARS IN
LAW ENFORCEMENT.
>> Darren: MICHAEL?
>> MY MIKE SERVED WITH THE
VERMONT STATE POLICE FOR 26
YEARS.
HE HAD A LONG CAREER WITH A
LOT OF DIFFERENT DUTIES DURING
THAT TIME.
>> Darren: AND BEFORE MIKE
CRAM PASSED, YOU FOLKS SET UP
THE 919 FOUNDATION.
TELL US THE SIGNIFICANCE, A,
OF THE NUMBER, AND WHAT THE
ORGANIZATION IS.
>> MIKE'S CALL NUMBER IN
WINOOSKI WAS 919, AND WHEN WE
REALIZED THAT HE WASN'T GOING
TO HAVE ANY MORE TREATMENTS,
WE CHOSE TO TAKE HIS LIFE
INSURANCE POLICY FROM THE
WINOOSKI PD AND START AN
ORGANIZATION AND WE CALLED IT
THE 919 FOUNDATION.
AND HE WAS VERY ADAMANT THAT
IT BE THE MONEY BE USED FOR
CANCER COMFORT.
HE HAD SEEN KIDS WHEN HE WAS
BEING TREATED.
THEY WERE SO-Y AND SO FULL OF
LIFE -- HAPPY, AND HE ADMIRED
THAT.
WE THOUGHT THAT WAS THE
PERFECT ORGANIZATION TO RAISE
MONEY FOR.
>> KIDS CAN JUST BE KIDS
THERE.
>> KIDS CAN BE KIDS AT CAMP.
>> YES.
FORGET ABOUT CANCER FOR A BIT.
LET'S TALK ABOUT ANOTHER
FUNDRAISER BY 14 STAR, THIS IS
A VETERAN-OWNED BREWERY IN ST.
ALBANS, THEY CAME OUT WITH A
919 CAN IN HONOR OF MIKE, AND
TO SUPPORT THE ORGANIZATION.
TELL US ABOUT THAT.
>> YES.
WE PARTNERED WITH 14 STAR
ANDREA, AND HER BROTHER STEVE,
TO DO A FUNDRAISER, AND WE'RE
VERY CONSCIOUS OF THE DATES
THAT WE DO THINGS, SO WE
WANTED VETERAN'S DAY TO BE THE
LAUNCH.
IT WAS VERY SUCCESSFUL.
THE WEATHER WAS HORRIBLE, BUT
WE STILL GOT A REALLY GOOD
CREW TO COME OUT.
SGL AND THE MONEY FOR THAT
WILL GO TO CANCER CAMP.
>> YES.
SGL THIS PAST SUMMER A
MEMORIAL WALKWAY WAS SET UP AT
THE VETERANS CEMETERY IN HONOR
OF GENERAL HESTON.
TELL US ABOUT THAT, AND WHAT
DO YOU THINK HE WOULD THINK
ABOUT THAT?
FRJTS I THINK THAT HE WOULD --
>> I THINK THAT HE WOULD BE
TRULY HUMBLED.
HE WASN'T ONE FOR A LOT OF
ACCOLADES, BUT HE WOULD BE
VERY HONORED THAT THEY WOULD
NAME A WALKWAY FOR HIM AT THE
CEMETERY THAT HE OVERSAW FOR
SO MANY YEARS.
>> Darren: AND I KNOW THAT
THIS IS A DIFFICULT TIME
BECAUSE THIS IS THE ONE-YEAR
ANNIVERSARY.
FRJTS IT IS THE ONE-YEAR
ANNIVERSARY.
>> Darren: ARE YOU BOTH
CONVINCED STILL THAT THE BURN
PITS WERE THE CAUSE OF YOUR
HUSBANDS' DEATHS?
>> ABSOLUTELY.
>> YES.
FOR MIKE IT HAS BEEN
CONFIRMED.
HE APPLIED FOR
SERVICE-CONNECTED DISABILITY
THROUGH THE DOD AND THROUGH
THE VA.
HE WAS DENIED THROUGH THE DOD,
BECAUSE YOU ONLY HAVE 180 DAYS
FROM QUALIFIED DUTY TO APPLY.
BUT HE DID RECEIVE
SERVICE-CONNECTED DISABILITY
FROM THE VA FOR HIS BURN PIT
EXPOSURE WHICH CAUSED CANCER.
>> Darren: PAT, YOU ARE STILL
FIGHTING FOR THIS.
>> WE ARE STILL FIGHTING.
OUR APPEAL RIGHT NOW IS THAT
VETERANS AFFAIRS IN
WASHINGTON, DC.
>> Darren: THERE HAS BEEN SOME
ACTION ON THIS AS WE'VE
REPORTED, VERMONT PASSED A
LAW, YOU KNOW, SMALL STEPS, IN
ACKNOWLEDGING THESE BURN PITS
COULD BE LIKELY CAUSING THESE
ILLNESSES.
THERE WAS A MOVE IN CONGRESS
TO GET THIS QUALIFIED AS A
DISABILITY.
CONGRESSMAN WELCH WON, PUSHING
THIS, PUSHING THIS.
IS ENOUGH BEING DONE?
I -- CONGRESSMAN WELCH IS ONE
PUSHING THIS.
IS THERE MORE DEVELOPMENT ON
THIS?
HE
>> THERE IS MORE.
CURRENTLY THERE'S 14 DIFFERENT
PIECES OF LEGISLATION BEING
PROPOSED FEDERALLY, AND NONE
OF IT HAS MOVED VERY QUICKLY,
BUT BECAUSE JON STEWART, WHO
HAS TAKEN ON THE FIGHT FOR THE
911 FIRST RESPONDERS WITH JOHN
P FEEL FROM THE FEEL GOOD
FOUNDATION, THEY WERE
SUCCESSFUL IN GETTING THAT
BENEFIT FOR THE FIRST
RESPONDERS EXTENDED TO 2092.
SO NOW THEY'VE JOINED THIS
FIGHT, BECAUSE IT IS
ESSENTIALLY THE SAME SORT OF
THING.
AND SO JON STEWART WENT TO
WASHINGTON, THERE WERE A GROUP
OF CONGRESSIONAL STAFF,
DSOAESHGS OTHER NON-PROFITS --
DSO'S, OTHER NON-PROFITS
FOCUSED ON BURN PIT EXPOSURE
AND OTHER TOXIC EXPOSURE, AND
WHAT IT WILL DO IS GET THE
GROUP TO COME TOGETHER AND
BUILD COMPREHENSIVE
LEGISLATION THAT MEETS
EVERYONE'S NEEDS, AND THE GOAL
IN THE END, ONCE THIS IS
WRITTEN, IS TO PROPOSE IT IN
SEPTEMBER, BUT TO HAVE IT,
THAT IT WOULD BE PRESUMPTIVE,
THAT IF YOU SERVED ANY TIME IN
9/11, YOU WERE EXPOSED.
IF IT WASN'T BURN PITS, AT
WHAT TIME CHEMICALS YOUR
UNIFORMS WERE SOAKED IN, OR IT
WAS THE MEDICATION YOU WERE
GIVEN FORMAL AREA.
THERE WERE A -- FOR MALARIA.
A LOT OF INCIDENCE TO BEING
EXPOSED TO TOXINS WHILE
SERVING OVERSEAS.
>> Darren: THANK YOU FOR YOUR
TIME, YOUR HUSBAND'S SERVICE
AND YOUR SERVICE AS WOMEN.
>> THANK YOU.
>> THANK YOU FOR WATCHING,
EVERYBODY.
HAVE A GOOD DAY.
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