It Isn’t Bottoms-Up For Australian Charity

June 2, 2014       The NonProfit Times      

An Australian mayor is saying thanks but no thanks to a donation to his town’s charity after learning the money is the proceeds of a picture of Kate Middleton’s royal wardrobe malfunction.

The Duchess of Cambridge experienced the awkward wardrobe malfunction last month while touring the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, Australia. After a helicopter’s propeller blew Middleton’s dress up, amateur photographer Diane Morel snapped the photo and sold it to a German tabloid for $1,000. Morel later said she would donate the proceeds to the Mayoral Bushfire Relief Fund, which provides funding toward rebuilding efforts after an October 2013 wildfire affected residents in the Blue Mountains region.

Morel said in a statement that she decided to make the donation after hearing both Middleton and Prince William talking about the victims of the bushfires in the region. She was also personally affected by the fires, as her father told Australian Women’s Weekly that the flames came within 100-meters of her home.

That money will not be accepted though, as Blue Mountains Mayor Mark Greenhill told Australian Women’s Weekly that the image was a “source of embarrassment for the duchess.”

“This position is informed by a deep respect for the Duchess of Cambridge and the strong view that the offending photograph is a source of humiliation for the Duchess, as an individual and a woman; promotes the distasteful and gratuitous sexualisation of all women; trivialises the impact of the October 2013 Blue Mountains bushfires; and embarrasses the community of the City of Blue Mountains.”

This is not the first or last time that a charity has turned down money from a questionable source. Most recently, and on a much larger scale, UCLA turned down a $3 million pledge from Donald Sterling after the now disgraced NBA owner made racist comments about African Americans.