The group was excluded from the campaign after complaints by Carolina Power & Light, the group’s primary target and one of the United Way’s biggest supporters.
This year, for the first time, the United Way had agreed to include in its workplace campaign 28 grass-roots groups that are members of N.C. Community Shares, a fundraising federation.
Of the 28 agencies, only N.C. Warn was rejected.
The Triangle United Way said it decided to bar N.C. WARN from the workplace campaign because it failed to meet United Way guidelines.
N.C. WARN and Community Shares said the activist group met the guidelines and that it was dropped because of CP&L’s complaint.
Tom Dugard, Triangle United Way president, defended the charity’s decision and warned that it might have to reverse the trend in recent years of expanding the number of charitable groups that it lets take part in its workplace campaign.
“We feel like we’re getting beat over the head for trying to be more inclusive,” Dugard said. “We’re thinking after this episode we may actually become less inclusive. Our board will probably tighten things up so any group that is questionable isn’t making it.”
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