The Minnesota Freedom Fund (MFF) faced a social media backlash after it revealed on Twitter that it has spent around $200,000 to bail out protesters—despite receiving millions in donations in recent weeks.
“Appreciate all those calling for transparency. We see y’all. Our values and mission have not changed since 2016. Be on the lookout for things coming on our end. Be well,” the nonprofit, which works to bail out those who couldn’t otherwise afford it, posted on Twitter.
“Without jeopardizing the safety of the folks we bailed out we paid well over $200k in the weeks since the uprising alone. We are working on doing more.”
Appreciate all those calling for transparency. We see y’all. Our values and mission have not changed since 2016. Be on the lookout for things coming on our end. Be well. https://t.co/ocWVGrYzcj— Minnesota Freedom Fund (@MNFreedomFund) June 16, 2020
The tweet sparked an outcry with critics calling out MFF for not using more of the funds to bail out protesters who were arrested during demonstrations sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody on May 25.
Many said that MFF had collected $35 million in donations in recent weeks and spent only a small fraction, prompting “35 MILLION” and “only 200k” to start trending on Twitter.
It’s not clear exactly how much the fund has raised since protests began, but on the Frequently Asked Questions section of the MFF website, updated earlier this month, it said that more than $30 million had been donated to the fund in the wake of Floyd’s death.
Tens of thousands of people from all over the world donated and called on others to do so, including celebrities such as Jameela Jamil and Seth Rogen, in a bid to help bail out protesters taken into police custody amid demonstrations against police brutality.
On its website, MFF wrote: “We know that many people have donated to us to support those protesting George Floyd’s murder and generations of police violence. We will prioritize posting bail for those arrested demanding justice for George Floyd.”
It added that until recently, MFF was a “small” fund that paid out a maximum of $1,000 in the course of a “normal” day. “We’re adapting quickly to handle the volume and scale of the current need,” it added.
This white run organization allegedly collected $35 million, and only used $200k to actually bail out protesters.— Tariq Nasheed 🇺🇸 (@tariqnasheed) June 16, 2020
Those of us in the real Black grassroots have been getting folks out of jail on our own.
This is why we have to stop the coopt#NoAntiBlackRacism https://t.co/UPOxDaCI4O