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#1
Old 10-26-2004, 02:54 PM
Guest
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Tejas
Posts: 4,291
Texas State Fraternal Order Of Police

and their telemarketers.

I am one of those telemarketer haters. Just accept that. I find them a hugely intrusive annoyance. Other threads have posts about "fun with telemarketers" and how to annoy them. I don't usually do that. I used to just say "No thanks" and hang right up. For some reason, I used to get ALOT of telemarketing calls- I used to get more telemarketing calls than regular phone calls in any given day!

Then the "Do Not Call List" came out and I was one of the first to sign up (6/2003)! Hooray! Relief.

I have noticed a huge decrease in calls. I still get some and now I say "No thanks. I'm on the 'Do Not Call List'" and that seems to work pretty well. Now when my phone rings, it is usually for a real phone call.

Except for the "Texas State Fraternal Order of Police." They won't stop calling. This started about 3 years ago.

Their calls come in cycles. Sometimes they'll call me every day for 10, 12, even 14 days in a row. Then they might take a break and call me a couple of times a day every few days. Then they might even take a break and not call me for several months (4 months seems to be the max).

At first, I thought they were a "real" organization. I'm a nurse. Nurses generally like cops. The FOP seemed like they could be an organization I would be interested in donating to, but I wasn't familiar with them so I asked the guy to send me some information about their organization. The guy said they weren't allowed to send out packets without a donation, but I'd get a cool sticker to put on my car if I donated now! That made me suspicious, so I declined to donate at that time. I looked them up on the Better Business Bureau Website (http://data.bbb.org/scripts/cgii...n&zid=35000710) and found they were not just a questionable company- they were a telemarketer who keeps the bulk of the funds raised for themselves.

They kept calling. I kept saying "No thanks." They kept calling and got wierd. First they (different guys) "implied" they were actual police officers. They they tried to tell me I had donated to them last year and asked how much I wanted to donate this year. When I told them I didn't donate last year, they said it must have been my husband. Then they "implied" that they are a charity, but when I asked them directly, they hung up on me, only to try again later. Repeat, repeat, repeat x 3 years, on and off again. Very annoying. I'm estimating about a hundred calls. From the same guys.

Last June (a full year after I signed up for "Do Not Call"), I got fed up with these yahoos. I got tired of saying "Put me on your Do Not Call List". I started keeping track of when they called, what the name of the guy was, what we talked about, and what happened. Unfortuanely, I cannot locate my notes for your enjoyment and perusal, but I will find them!

Typically, the converstaion would go like this:

"Hi, this is Joe from the State Fraternal Order of Police. We support the families and children of of fallen officers..."

"Hi Joe, I'm on the "Do..

click


or "Are you a charity because..."

click


or "What was your name again?..."

click


or "Hang on while I get a pencil. I need the name, address, and phone number of your comp.."

click


Or "I cannot believe you have called me A-gain. This is the thrid time toda.."

click

That last bit is very annoying. It's crushing to work up to a good rant just to have no one to deliver it to, lemmetellya.


Unfortuanely, I cannot locate my notes for your enjoyment and perusal, but I will find them!

The one I can recall was Darrell on June 29th, 2004 at 9 pm. I that time I asked him if they were a charity and, Darrell, that sweetheart, he hung up on me because that is normal behaviour on their part. I remember this one call specifically because it was the last call in a series of calls that I received and also used to file a complaint with on June 30th. I called the phone company who sent me to the FCC who took my complaint and also referred me to the Texas State Attorney General for a fraud complaint because of the (possible.. oh, cops. I mean 'alleged ' ) misrepresentations the FOP fundraisers made over the phone. I haven't heard back from any of them.

I also wrote to the actual State Fraternal Order of Police complaining about their telemarketer, the tactics they use, and the frequency of the calls. Dennis Ward wrote back on July 1, 2004:

>I am terribly sorry that you have been disturbed by
> our fund raising efforts. Survivor benefits for our
> members who die in the line of duty is just one of
> the many things we provide our law enoforcement
> members. Our membership being made of full time law
> enforcement we contract this effort out to a
> company.
>
> We are a non-profit organization that is exempt from
> do not call lists nationawide. However, we respect
> those who do not wish to contribute. I will see
> that you are removed from our calling data base. We
> will need your number so I may have our contractor
> remove it. I hope you have a blessed day.
>
>
> May God Bless America,
>
>
> Dennis "DL" Ward, President
> Texas State Lodge
> Fraternal Order of Police

I sent my number to him immediately.

But, I think this guy is lying, too. I don't think the TSFOP is a non-profit organization, and certainly their contractor, the telemarketers are not. I checked out their website, and I don't see any information about them being a non-profit. Usually, charitable and/or non-profit organizations advertise that heavily.

Also, I'm not sure the FOP actually gives much to families and children of fallen officers. The most I could find is a total of approximately $4000.00, maybe $5000.00, in $500.00 increments to 8-10 winning applicants in scholarship grants every year, and some (some free, some at extra cost) life insurance offered to members. I guess that's what Officer Ward means by survivor benefits as on one of the FOP sites, there was a request for donations for particular people/families. The FOP listed the family or person, a description of their problem and where to send the donations. It didn't appear as though the FOP itself was giving the families any money.

They apparantly offer a legal defense fund, too, but have no information about it. It looks like it is simply a referral service to some lawyers "on call" for officers in need of a legal help. The FOP really seems to be an informal union or perhaps a professional organization.

I wrote my good friend Dennis another letter complaining about his telemarketers. He wrote back saying it was my fault as I had not supplied him with my phone number last time we talked (not true), but that he would personally have my number removed and review the tapes of calls made to me. I asked him "Which ones?"

He said the problem was the "redialer", and that if I don't answer my phone, the redialer calls me again later. That doesn't explain why I actually talk to these morons before they hang up on me, now does it Dennis?

He said they are a non-profit and are allowed to call, but they respect those who don't wish to be contacted. Well, maybe the FOP is and does, but this not so with their "contractor".

I asked him if they were a 5013(c) organization, or if not, what was their status. He didn't answer me.

I also asked him exactly what percentage of donations collected went to his organization. Twice. He didn't answer that question either. I''ve asked him again. Still no answer.

Now for the rant: Telemarketing Company: You brainless sack draggers. Stop calling me. Don't call me again. Never, ever call me. I will never, ever give you one thin dime of my hard earned money. I will tell everyone I know what a bunch of pushy, stupid, rude, morons you guys are, how you keep most of the funds collected, lie to get donations, and will tell everyone I know to never ever give you any money at all. I will file yet another complaint against you in hopes that you will recieve a big, fat fine for harrassing me. I will complain again to the organization that hired you in hopes that they will fire your ass. I hope the hot Texas sun melts your phone lines and that your fingers and ears drop off so you can never call anyone again. I hope your redialer gets a virus so when you drag your unemployed knuckles home at night, it calls YOU every hour on the hour all night and all day for three years.

You are ugly as a stump and dumber as a rock and your head is all mushy like a puffball (Austin Lounge Lizards).

FOP: The company you hired to raise money for you sucks. They are not doing anything good for your image and keeping most of the money they raise for themselves. You guys might (or might not) be a good organization, but it's too hard to tell. You should clean up you image and the first step in doing that is getting rid of your hired, rude, lying, obnoxious, zombie blood suckers.

And, no, you may not call me.
#2
Old 10-26-2004, 02:58 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Exurbia, No'thuh Bawst'n
Posts: 12,657
Sounds like your Attorney General might want to investigate the FOP itself, eh?
#3
Old 10-26-2004, 03:38 PM
Guest
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 362
Wow, you must push their buttons just right or something. They called me once, I said "Nope." and they never called again. Did you really piss one of them off or something?
#4
Old 10-26-2004, 05:59 PM
Guest
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Tejas
Posts: 4,291
Boy, cruising around the WWW I've determined that ANY calls you get for any organization involving police, firefighter, troopers, police chiefs, etc is basically fraudulent.

First, the telemarketer-caller claims an amount unknown but thought to be in excess of 50% of the donated money, then the actual organizations abuse the money, too. Apparantly, the are only applying between 10% and 15% of the money they get (less telemarketing fees) toward the stated goals of their organization.

So, if you give the friendly phone-calling trooper guy ten bucks, you will be fortunate to have 75 cents of that donation applied to some helpful program.

Another lady told me around two hours ago that she saw the "Dare" program collecting at the grocery store recently. She questioned the guy. He told her he worked for a company called EPI (Event Promotions Incorporated) and that they were going to give 20% of the money they collected to "Dare".

I'm not totally naive and have always had a policy of not dealing with telemarketers, but I am certainly surprised at how little of the donated money makes it to the place you think it is going to go to.

I'd like to see these organizations tax forms. Or else start my own non-profit.
#5
Old 10-27-2004, 10:12 AM
The Central Scrutinizer
Moderator
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Pork Roll/Taylor Ham
Posts: 23,206
I don't want to get into a PBA/FOP war so I won't say anything about the FOP. However in my state the PBA makes it very clear that we will never use telemarketers. Most of our fundraising is done through events with the local businesses. When we do contact the public it is through the mail with easily verified contact information. Anyone calling up claiming to be from the PBA asking for money is a fraud. I am not 100% sure but I think this is the policy of the PBA across the country.
#6
Old 10-27-2004, 12:48 PM
Guest
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: East Texas
Posts: 4,994
They called me the other day. I got all teary-voiced and told him I had to borrow money to pay my rent this month, I couldn't possibly donate to any charity (which is true). He hung up on me.
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