Hundreds of fundraisers—including employees at Apple, Google, and Microsoft—have raised millions of dollars for the Black Lives Matter Foundation, believing it to be affiliated with the racial justice movement. But according to an investigation by BuzzFeed News, that organization has nothing to do with the Black Lives Matter global justice movement, and is instead a group aimed at building community relationships with police. The Black Lives Matter Foundation, based in Santa Clarita, California, actually has just one employee and advocates for “bringing the community and police closer together,” its founder told BuzzFeed.
The similar name has led both individuals and corporate entities to raise funds for group, mistakenly thinking they are giving money to the racial justice movement, whose charitable organization is officially called “Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, Inc.” A Black Lives Matter spokesperson accused the Black Lives Matter Foundation of “improperly” using the BLM name, but the foundation’s founder, Robert Ray Barnes, argued that the movement does not own the moniker. Fundraising websites including GoFundMe are now freezing funds sent to the foundation following a Buzzfeed News investigation.