The Better Business Bureau does not currently list the Humane Society of the United States as an accredited charity, but the animal rights organization hopes to change that. In February, the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance replaced a notice of accreditation with one noting a review of the group was in progress. Bennett Weiner, BBBWGA’s chief operating officer, told Agri-Pulse the decision was in relation to workplace harassment allegations that eventually forced the resignation of former president and CEO Wayne Pacelle. (In January, Paul Shapiro, a top official of the organization, also left HSUS, shortly before sexual harassment allegations against him were made public.) The review, Weiner said, is not tied to concerns about the amount of money the organization gives to pet shelters, a frequent critique from ag groups upset with the HSUS’s efforts. Instead, the BBBWGA wants to be sure HSUS meets the 20 standards used in charity evaluation. In a statement, HSUS said they will “provide additional information as required concerning the steps we have taken to make our workplace a better, safer, and kinder one for all.” Regaining accreditation “is a priority for our donors and our leadership team, and we hope and expect to regain the right to display the BBBWGA seal in the near future.” Weiner said he anticipates BBBWGA will provide a final report “in the next several weeks.”
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