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Donations Collected by County Firefighters Union Not a Scam

Residents should not confuse legitimate efforts with a reported scam for donations to a fake fire department.

UPDATE (1:33 p.m.)—The Baltimore County Professional Fire Fighters & Paramedics IAFF Local 1311 union is collecting funds through phone calls and by checks left on doors, according to union president Michael Day.

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Residents should not confuse this effort with an earlier report of a scam for donations to a fake fire department, Day said.

The alerted residents Tuesday morning of a possible scam involving requests for donations to the "Nottingham Fire Department."

Day, however, said that no one representing the union would identifiy themselves as affiliated with the "Nottingham Fire Department," as no such fire department exists. 

"If we have someone who is a bad egg ... or deviating from the script, they are fired immediately," he said.

The nearest fire companies serving the Perry Hall area include the , Baltimore County Fire Station 8, Fullerton, the and the .

Are you aware of any scams this holiday season? Tell us in the comments.

Patty Gavrilis December 01, 2011 at 03:32 AM
My son in law works at Fullerton and was at my house for dinner when I got the call so I told them he'd deliver it on his next shift. The next day they called back and said it would be easier to just tape it to the door, which I thought was ridiculous since he could just take it himself!
William Lutostanski Jr December 01, 2011 at 01:53 PM
This money does not go to your local fire department. The donations are solicted by a company contracted by the BCPFF Local 1311, the union. The union uses the money for their smoke detector program, fire victims assistence program, and various fire prevention programs. This company has been known to misrepresent itself over the years as your local fire department. The method of taping checks to the door is one way they accept donations, personally I would never do this and it is a " shady" practice and dangerous to leave your information taped to the door. With that being said the money does go to worthwhile cause at the end of the day, just know what and who you are donating too as it becomes confusing with the manner in which they solict.
jack amrhein December 02, 2011 at 07:23 PM
I echo what Will has said in his comments. The "Local” (as many call it) firefighters Union does use an agency to solicit by phone. They have been known over the years to not be 100% forthcoming when they call; I know, they've called me and have been evasive when I asked questions. They are though, doing their job. That being said; the money does go to good causes and projects provided by "The Local" throughout Baltimore County, but may not necessarily go to your specific community. I would caution citizens about leaving a check with not only your personal information, but also your account and bank information on your door. Identity theft is all over the news these days. Leaving it out is just not a good practice. I encourage citizens to keep donating; however I would suggest they send their checks to either the Union Hall directly (address available on the internet) after the phone solicitations or to learn who their local volunteer fire station is and send directly to them as well. Most Volunteer stations send direct mail requests several times a year. A stamp or 2 is much cheaper than recovering from identity theft. Stay safe.
Dina El-Mahdy December 22, 2011 at 05:19 AM
I just got home phone for the first time since I came to the States in 2005. Sadly, 90% of the calls I receive are for donations to the police, firefighters, US troops,...etc. People who call me know my full name, home address, phone numbers, and surprisingly they know my salary!!! When I google the names of these not-for-profit associations, I find many people agree that they are scams. I have no clue how could people get all my private information that easily!!!!
Kali January 25, 2013 at 11:59 PM
I just received a call from someone soliciting a donation for Baltimore County Fire Departments, and as before I requested they put me on their do-not-call list. For the last 2 years I have requested my number be taken of their lists, and this only increases their calls and demands. The call is always from an obnoxious young man who refuses to acknowledge I will only contribute through the mail. In addition, they will not stop talking and end the call at my polite request. I always end up hanging up on them after repeatedly and politely requesting they put me on their do-not-call list. Very disturbing. Is there a number I may call to lodge an official complaint? Thanks

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