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Group loses charity status

As Toronto prepares for a frigid few days, there’s word the charitable status of a group that says it’s dedicated to helping street children and the homeless has been revoked.

As Toronto prepares for a frigid few days, there’s word the charitable status of a group that says it’s dedicated to helping street children and the homeless has been revoked.

The Canada Revenue Agency says the charitable registration of Metro Street Focus Organization was revoked, effective last Saturday.

The federal agency says an audit of the organization identified serious issues of non-compliance with the requirements of the Income Tax Act.

It says Metro Street Focus Organization couldn’t prove that claimed clothing, shoes and blankets had been distributed for charitable purposes, or even that they actually existed.

Toronto has issued an extreme cold weather alert, which opens extra shelter beds to help homeless people get in from the frigid conditions.

Metro Street Focus Organization could not be reached for comment.

CRA said the audit also revealed that, of the cash received, a significant portion was used for the improper personal benefit of the program director.

Money went to educational fees and repair and utility bills for the executive director’s personal residence, the CRA said.

A charity that has had its charitable status revoked can no longer issue donation receipts for income tax purposes.

 
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