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Should charities accept money from ethically dubious donors?

A question of judgment—and self-preservation

By Jessica Abrahams  

Was The National Portrait Gallery right to accept donations from BP? Photo: Isabel Infantes/EMPICS Entertainment

It is the season of giving—a critical time for many charities, non-profits and cultural organisations that rely on the Christmas boost to get them through the following year.

But what about when money is donated from questionable sources—controversial companies, say, or disreputable individuals. Should it be accepted?

General Booth, founder of the Salvation Army, was clear about his view on the matter. “I shall take all the money I can get, and I…

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