2 West Seattle solicitor alerts: 1 on the phone, 1 at the door

January 22, 2010 at 10:21 pm | In Door-to-door alert, Neighborhoods, West Seattle news | 9 Comments

Two solicitor alerts that WSB’ers wanted to share tonight. Both could well be legitimate, but the recipients’ eyebrows were raised a bit – read on for both reports:

First, from CWP:

Here on 47th St. SW on Friday evening shortly before nine I received a telephone call soliciting money for policemen because of their dangerous work. “Not for the policemen themselves but for their families”, the man explained. Without further explanation he asked if I could make a contribution. I had hardly begun to say that I do not respond to any solicitation over the phone before he abruptly hung up. Have others received a similar call?

From Fritz:

29 th ave sw near westwood village this evening.

at approximately 7:30 pm this evening, a young man approached the back door of our home smiling and waving. My family was in the kitchen chatting and we were obviously surprised by his presence at the back door.

he apologized for surprising us, but went right into his pitch for the sierra club. he had some Sierra Club markings, (clipboard and badge etc.) however we interrupted his pitch and told him we were taking a pass. We did this mostly because we were kinda freaked out that he came in the back yard. at that point in time we were not willing to donate any money to his cause.

he was pleasant and respectful, and he left peacefully. He did not slam the gate and walked out to the street.

our backyard is fenced in and fairly dark. this young man had to enter our backyard through a gate to get to the door. in 7 years of living in this house this is the first stranger to enter the yard and approach the back door while we were home.

i just thought it was odd since there is a walkway to the front door.

9 Comments

  1. Fritz, it sounds like you were lucky to be home.

    Comment by dsa — 11:00 pm January 22, 2010 #

  2. They were in our neighborhood the other day, I cut ‘em short and closed the door. He proceeded to the next door neighbors house were they let him in…

    Comment by Scott — 1:07 am January 23, 2010 #

  3. The same guy came to my house last night too. I’m pretty sure he was legit. I looked through his paperwork though did not contribute as I don’t give money to anyone who comes to my door. Later, out walking my dog, I saw him and another woman from Sierra Club out canvassing. They were obviously working from some kind of list with specific addresses on it, not hitting every house. I find it hard to believe that this type of fundraising is effective.

    Comment by Joan — 9:10 am January 23, 2010 #

  4. One young man came to our home earlier this week too and he left AFTER we pointed out the TWO ‘No Solicitors’ signs. I agree; this is not a good fundraiser/awareness strategy. Has anyone contacted Sierra Club to see if this is legit?

    Comment by Magic Man — 10:43 am January 23, 2010 #

  5. I had a solicitor at my door at about 6:30 last night…young (20′s, Hispanic looking) kid with badges and stuff around his neck…my dogs were going nuts so that usually discourages them…through all of the noise I heard him ask for a new pen…”a pen?” I asked…he said his was “out of ink”…so I locked the door (dogs still barking) and got him a pen…he wanted to know how much he owed me…for the pen? Weird…I said “nothing” and closed the door…he almost ran out of my yard as my dogs were about to bust out!

    Comment by onceachef — 10:43 am January 23, 2010 #

  6. I woke up to knocking on my front door. I looked through the peep hole to see two men in business casual dress standing there. Of course I didn’t open the door, but they left some paperwork in the doorframe, and proceeded to knock on the front doors of other units. Looks like it was just a religious pamphlet. To each their own, but don’t bug me on a Saturday morning.

    Comment by Aimee — 11:12 am January 23, 2010 #

  7. Do NOT EVER give money to anyone representing themselves as the “Fraternal Order of Police” that calls on the phone. Although the FOP, itself, is a good organization, the telemarketers that are doing the phone calling are keeping 83-88% of the money donated FOR THEMSELVES!
    .
    I received a phone call from these people a couple of years ago. They pressure you into promising a pledge and “record” it. I told them that I was interested but that I never give out information over the phone. I would be happy to look at any information they would like to send and if satisfied, send in a donation.
    .
    Well, the packet comes and I search the address, phone, and website listed. I noticed that the address for the donation did not match the address on the true FOP website. An hour of research later, I found out the name of the telemarketing company and further research on that led me to multiple reports by State Attorneys General and fraud complaints.
    .
    As I stated above, these companies and the people calling are NOT police officers calling on behalf of families. The fraud complaints dealt mainly with the misrepresentation.
    .
    Again, only 12-17% of the money you contribute through these organizations is actually going to your local FOP.
    .
    If you wish to give to the FOP, you should contact them directly.

    Comment by Skeptical in HighPoint — 11:13 am January 23, 2010 #

  8. Sounds like the same people calling for donations to the families of four fallen police officers
    a couple months ago. I wasn’t fooled either.

    Comment by Steph in WS — 12:13 pm January 25, 2010 #

  9. I gave money years ago to some sort of Fire Dept. benefit( WA state council of FF maybe). Somehow my name is now on every police, ambulance, fire dept. telemarketer list. I’m sure there are legit organizations collecting donations, but because of this, I am now VERY leary of giving money to any charity. Especially over the phone.

    Comment by G — 5:11 pm January 25, 2010 #

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