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|Independent task force releases YouthPride findings ahead of tonight’s community forum|
|by Ryan Watkins|
|March 06, 2012 16:01|
The independent task force investigating the ongoing viability of YouthPride released its findings today ahead of a planned community forum set for 7 p.m. tonight at Saint Mark United Methodist Church.
The report was originally intended to be completed last month, but was “delayed due to a failure of YouthPride leadership to adhere to their previously agreed cooperation with the Task Force,” according to task force member Charlie Stadtlander.
Among the report's findings are that the organization is violating its own bylaws by not having a fully staffed board of directors, YouthPride has no evidence its filed 941 payroll tax filings for Sept. 2011 or Dec. 2011, personal medical records of clients are unaccounted – possibly violating HIPPA regulations – and the organization's last annual budget was ended in September 2011.
Also included in the report is an estimate of $81,204 in debt, though the report states that certain financial information, such as bank statements, the organization's checkbook and lists of outstanding debtors were not given to the task force. “Assumptions [were] made to arrive at YouthPride’s outstanding debt,” the report reads.
The report's conclusions:
The report closes by asking a series of questions about the continued viability of the youth advocacy organization: With no governing Board of Directors, who is held accountable to answer to Donors and Supporters? Who is the custodian of assets such as bank accounts? Who will ensure liabilities are paid? Ultimately, how are LGBT Youth going to be served?
YouthPride’s financial troubles became public in December, when Board President Jordan Myers posted on Facebook that the agency needed to raise $25,000 in one week, and Executive Director Terence McPhaul said YouthPride had to raise $40,000 by Dec. 31 or face closure in 60 days. Despite that deadline passing, YouthPride currently remains open.
In the wake of the financial crisis, questioning by GA Voice revealed confusion within YouthPride about such basic issues as who serves on the board of directors and when the last board meeting was held.
Led by gay teacher Charlie Stadtlander, volunteers formed two ad-hoc committees to try to assess the current financial and legal status of YouthPride and insure that at least some services for youth continue should Atlanta’s troubled LGBT youth agency close.
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