Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Whither thou, Aird & Berlis?

While we've recently been poking around the increasingly curious CRA-registered charity "The Democracy Fund" (https://thedemocracyfund.ca/) given Rebel News' Ezra Levant's insistence that, if you donate to his "Fight the Fines" campaign through that charity, you will be eligible for a tax receipt, there are a number of other oddities related to that charity, and here's just one of them.

It turns out that there is both a registered corporation and a CRA-registered charity called "The Democracy Fund" and even the briefest of inspections establishes that these must represent one and the same thing. Here's a snippet from CRA's charities page:

In the meantime, here's the first part of the corporation page:

and here's the second part:

and in the midst of all that, I want to draw your attention to the listed address for all of the charity, the corporation and the corporation's directors -- that would be Suite 1800, 181 Bay Street, Toronto. Which inspires one to ask ... what exactly would one find if one dropped into Suite 1800 at that address? And the answer is ... the prominent law firm of Aird & Berlis:

Now, there is nothing necessarily untoward about this -- it may be that those charity and corporation directors simply needed a lawyer to draw up the incorporation papers, and any old law firm would probably do.

On the other hand, given the puzzling lack of information about registered tax charity "The Democracy Fund," it seems perfectly appropriate to ask (in the words of a recent correspondent) whether Aird & Berlis is comfortable being "the corporate home to a charity that is deliberately engaged in working to destroy public health measures." (I might have phrased that more diplomatically but the main point stands -- why is a prestigious law firm like that playing host to a decidedly sketchy charity whose only visible purpose is to help undermine public health in Canada, and facilitate using public funds to do it?)

Maybe someone should ask them.

P.S. We're not done with "The Democracy Fund" ... not by a long shot.


Anonymous said...

For clarification, most charities (and foundations and not for profits) are, in fact, corporations. That simply means they they are incorporated, which affords directors a measure of protection against various forms of liability, and protects their personal assets.

CC said...