BLM raked in $90 million in donations last year

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Epilogue Kitchen & Cocktails owner Jonathan Jones speaks with customers near an image of George Floyd while serving free meals in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day in Salem, Oregon

Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation took in $90 million in gifts last year, it was revealed when the group revealed its finances for the first time recently, but local chapters say they haven’t yet gotten a slice of the pie.

The nonprofit revealed its finances exclusively to The Associated Press even as the local chapters that they are not getting any money. Only one BLM group in Denver has signed a multiyear contract with the national association to receive funds.

Representatives of the foundation say they are building infrastructure to keep pace with funding and that they plan to use their endowment for more than protests after Black suspects die at the hands of police or vigilantes.

“We want to uplift Black joy and liberation, not just Black death. We want to see Black communities thriving, not just surviving,” reads a statement the foundation shared with the AP.

It is the first time in BLM´s nearly eight-year history that leaders have offered a close look at their money situation.

The May 2020 death of George Floyd in the hands of the Minneapolis police was a huge boost for the group’s income and influence, sparking media-fueled protests around the world. The sudden notoriety caused simmering tensions to boil over between some of the movement´s organizers and national leaders. Grassroots members went public late last year with complaints about financial transparency and accountability.

The foundation said it directed $21.7million in grants to official and unofficial BLM chapters, as well as 30 black-led local groups. It ended 2020 with a balance of more than $60 million, having spent nearly a quarter of its assets on the grants and other charitable gifts.

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