Reported by Edinburgh Live – the news we share raises awareness of equality issues being reported in the media. 

Edinburgh’s LGBTQI+ community fear they are being targeted by ‘fake GoFundMe pages’ that play on vulnerable situations to make cash.

Members of Edinburgh’s LGBTQI+ community online safe space fear they are being ‘poisoned by scammers’ after an influx of GoFundMe pages from people claiming to be ostracised by their families for being gay. The group say that some of these pages have allegedly subsequently been discovered to be false.

One recent GoFundMe page shared by a Facebook profile with no pictures or information about the individual claimed to be a fundraiser to help a young teen ‘help leave his homophobic family’.

The allegedly fake fundraiser said it was created by a 19-year-old who ‘desperately needed money to move to Edinburgh from the Shetland Islands after becoming a victim of homophobia at his family home.’

But when the fundraiser began to arouse suspicion among members due to the LGBTQI+ page being ‘targeted by similar scams in the past’ the GoFundMe page disappeared.

One member said: “If this is a scam – you’re a disgrace. I have friends who have genuinely had family disown them for their sexuality.

“It’s upsetting and there shouldn’t be any money given – just need to be there for people – I’ve heard some terrible stories.”

Another said: “I’m afraid this page is getting poisoned by scammers.

“Last year we gave money to guys claiming to have been ostracised by their families for being gay.

“Just today this page has had two GoFundMe pages claiming the same thing. I assure everyone it’s a scam do not trust this.

A third added: “What angers me is most of them aren’t even from or connected to Scotland.

“Plus we are all dealing with COVID and people are struggling to put food on tables and to merely survive and yet we have people lying to con good people out of money. Sickening.”



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