Friday, October 24, 2014

Actions Most Positive for Positive Action

I'd call a spa treatment and a massage some positive action. An Garda Siochana, however, doesn't see the positivity in such things. They're under the impression that the charity organization Positive Action was strictly about raising money for women infected with Hepatitis C.

There's more to Positive Action than helping the sick. What about helping the stressed individuals working so hard to generate the funds and then distribute them? One for you, two for me, one for you, three for me...and so on until several hundred thousand euro go missing.

One employee of Positive Action must have become exhausted with all the support group development and the lobbying for the best care available, to say nothing of the advocating. A massage would loosen up the tension in the shoulders, and someone whose liver is gone due to Hepatitis C couldn't begrudge an hour of such therapy. So busy was she with her work that she had to send a courier to pick up the dry-cleaning, and Positive Action came through once again. Or she charged the cost to the office. Either way, she earned the perk, right?

Have you ever tried to drive in Dublin? It's madness. So it's understandable that Positive Action would have spent €34,000 on taxi fares over a four year period. They must have had to do a great deal of traveling, what with all that advocating and ensuring the best care and such.

The organization also managed to spend €100,000 on such essentials as angel card readings and spiritual healing. Well, if the drugs aren't working, what's a patient to do? A little spiritual healing might be the only option.

Then there were the hundreds of thousands spent on overseas travel, and the astronomical sum that went towards legal fees.

Investigators are uncovering some phony invoices and inflated invoices and just about any scheme you could imagine to separate the cash from Positive Action. To help with disguising transactions, there was a secret bank account, to go along with a secret investment account.

The Health Service paid for all that lavish spending over a four year period, beauty treatments and groceries and whatever was wanted, because no one was minding the till. The employee entrusted with distributing the money to the women who were supposed to be reaping the benefits managed to reap the benefits largely for herself. Over a million of your hard-earned euro were thrown down the drain due to a lack of oversight.

The oversight is coming too late. The money is gone, and it isn't coming back.

Gardai aren't even sure where it all went.

The woman at the center of the fraud is cooperating with authorities, who have yet to charge her. They'll most likely wait to see how much cooperating she does before settling on a suitable charge.

For Positive Action, it was four years of living large on someone else's back, not unlike a pimp. That would make the Irish taxpayers the whores, apparently.

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