Red Cross Debit Card Abuse

  1. Designer jeans, high heels and purses -- not exactly what the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the American Red Cross had in mind.
    http://www.wreg.com/Global/story.asp...2&nav=3HvEeX1i

    Another failed plan.
    •  
  2. 128 Comments

  3. by   Mkue
    oops..duplicate post
  4. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Quote from Mkue
    Designer jeans, high heels and purses -- not exactly what the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the American Red Cross had in mind.
    http://www.wreg.com/Global/story.asp...2&nav=3HvEeX1i

    Another failed plan.

    Are you TOTALLY surprised?

    I didn't hear that they "automatically" declined cigarettes either!

    I would probably in the same position pay to have my nails done or some such extravagance, but wow that's a lot of hot dogs you could get for $2000.

    <shrug> what can ya do?
  5. by   Mkue
    Well personally I wouldn't spend 800.00 on a purse..if I lost my purse in a flood I might buy a cheap one for 10.00..afterall a women needs a purse. I can't afford designer jeans and from the looks of some of those jeans I wouldn't buy even if I had the money.

    Botton line..it was a bad idea by FEMA and the Red Cross.

    Enough clothing was supplied by donations. Certificates at major grocery stores could have been given, or even food stamps temporarily.
  6. by   SusanJean
    The debit cards were the most efficient way to get emerg. relief money to a vast amount of people in need, many w/ no access to their banks, or bank accounts.

    How many thousands did it work for?

    There are people w/ bad fiscal sense all over the place - a crisis will not necessarily change that... but for others, hopefully the majority, it worked.

    Can you imagine how many people have never seen that amount of money at one time? I am sure it was overwhelming.

    I don't condone that type of spending, but it is always the negative we hear about in the media.
  7. by   mercyteapot
    Someone in an earlier thread actually called it, that someone was going to find it necessary to post an article about the fact that some money is spent questionably. And I say questionably because, after all, people do need new shoes and clothes- it isn't a good idea to blow their budget on them, but that's just poor money management. This system is still likely more efficient than attempting to come with any other distribution system, which is going to involve middle men who need to be paid.
  8. by   lisamc1RN
    I still think it was a good idea to give debit cards. There could be abuses of ANY distrubution plan that could be conceived. I'm sure there are many people out there who are using the money wisely. I actually feel bad for those who have blown the money on expensive items. They don't know how to manage money so it stands to reason that they will have a difficult time getting on their feet again, assuming they ever were on their feet.
  9. by   lisamc1RN
    I was just thinking about this. One way to eliminate abuse in the future would be to allow the cards to only be used at certain stores...Wal-Mart, Sears, Kohl's, etc. and local grocery stores. All of those stores have cards that can be purchased. I don't think you can buy a $700 purse at Wal-Mart. It still wouldn't prevent abusers from buying inappropriate things, but it certainly would limit how expensive the items are. Just a thought...
  10. by   Mkue
    Quote from SusanJean
    The debit cards were the most efficient way to get emerg. relief money to a vast amount of people in need, many w/ no access to their banks, or bank accounts.

    How many thousands did it work for?

    There are people w/ bad fiscal sense all over the place - a crisis will not necessarily change that... but for others, hopefully the majority, it worked.

    Can you imagine how many people have never seen that amount of money at one time? I am sure it was overwhelming.

    I don't condone that type of spending, but it is always the negative we hear about in the media.
    We need to hear the negative, ..those who donated to the Red Cross such as myself aren't very pleased I imagine. I donated money to the Red Cross to help others less fortunate than myself, although the truth is I couldn't afford what little I did donate, it wasn't in my budget.. I try to be responsible with my money but when I saw the cries on the television I decided to forgo my phone bill and made a payment online to the Red Cross. Not thinking the phone company would shut off my phone for 53.00 ! They then charged me 21.00 to turn it back on. But at least someone is walking around with a nice Louis Vitton purse.

    Actually, I am aware that it's only a small % who are abusing the debit card program, they tick me off..and should be ashamed of themselves. :imbar
  11. by   Mkue
    Quote from lisamc1
    I was just thinking about this. One way to eliminate abuse in the future would be to allow the cards to only be used at certain stores...Wal-Mart, Sears, Kohl's, etc. and local grocery stores. All of those stores have cards that can be purchased. I don't think you can buy a $700 purse at Wal-Mart. It still wouldn't prevent abusers from buying inappropriate things, but it certainly would limit how expensive the items are. Just a thought...
    And a very good thought at that!
  12. by   gauge14iv
    These cards also were used to pay for hotel rooms, transportation...those won't go on a walmart or sears card.

    Appropriate use or not - we aren't in their shoes and it isn't up to us to say what they need or don't need. 800.00 purse - ridiculous - but I don't hear the media talking about the GOOD things people used them for!
  13. by   Mkue
    I'm guessing the media picked up on the story since it involves FEMA.
  14. by   mercyteapot
    Quote from Mkue
    We need to hear the negative, ..those who donated to the Red Cross such as myself aren't very pleased I imagine. I donated money to the Red Cross to help others less fortunate than myself, although the truth is I couldn't afford what little I did donate, it wasn't in my budget.. I try to be responsible with my money but when I saw the cries on the television I decided to forgo my phone bill and made a payment online to the Red Cross. Not thinking the phone company would shut off my phone for 53.00 ! They then charged me 21.00 to turn it back on. But at least someone is walking around with a nice Louis Vitton purse.

    Actually, I am aware that it's only a small % who are abusing the debit card program, they tick me off..and should be ashamed of themselves. :imbar
    .

close