Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt issued a consumer warning against the Humane Society of the United States last week, warning Oklahomans of the group’s solicitations and advertisements.
Pruitt has said he is looking into concerns over fundraising advertisements made in the wake of the May 2013 tornado outbreak.
“Oklahomans are caring people and gave generously to assist our friends and neighbors devastated by the deadly May 2013 tornadoes,” Attorney General Pruitt said in a statement available here. “In the wake of the storm, there are concerns some national animal welfare organizations may have misled Oklahomans by giving the impression their donations would help displaced animals and animal shelters in Oklahoma. Our review has found the Oklahoma shelters have not received assistance from national groups.”
Instead, Pruitt believes donations made by locals to the group instead went into lobbying activities. Animal shelters across central Oklahoma indicated they did not receive assistance from national animal welfare organizations, including the HSUS.
He adds, “We all want the best for displaced animals and appreciate the work animal welfare organizations do to provide care for dogs, cats and other animals. But it’s important to ensure Oklahomans are not being deceived, and that the donations they made to help Oklahoma-based animal shelters are doing just that.”
The Attorney General’s Office is reviewing information from national animal welfare organizations to help resolve and clarify these concerns.
Pruitt’s alert was issued just hours before the Center for Consumer Freedom launched a week-long advertising campaign in the state, according to the Tulsa (Okla.) World. While coincidental timing, Pruitt has said he had no advanced knowledge of the campaign.