Punish Director for Allegedly Stealing from Child Hunger Relief Fund

Kid in Cafeteria by U.S. Department of Agriculture

Target: Tennessee Department of Human Services Chief Raquel Hatter

Goal: Investigate and punish former executive who allegedly swindled money intended for hungry children.

A former executive in Tennessee is now the subject of a criminal investigation after investigators found evidence that she may have misappropriated money that was meant to provide snacks and meals to low-income children. Investigators have determined that Patsy Simpson, former executive director of the Cherry Tree Food Program in Clarksville, Tennessee, may have illegally spent more than $180,000 on home renovations, retail shopping trips, restaurants, and gas from 2012 to 2015.

Simpson’s alleged activity had disastrous implications for another program in the area. Raelene Gilber, the operator of a similar program, was forced to pay for expenses out of her own pocket because the monthly reimbursements from Cherry Tree never arrived. While Gilber was maxing out credit cards, Simpson was spending $38,000 on a new gazebo. Simpson’s actions, if true, demand swift and harsh punishment; stealing money meant for children is cruel, selfish, and above all else, illegal. Sign the petition below and urge the state’s human services department to investigate this alleged wrongdoing.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Chief Hatter,

I am writing to express my concern about recent allegations regarding the activity of a former executive who operated a program under your department’s oversight. Investigators have determined that Patsy Simpson, former executive director of the Cherry Tree Food Progra, may have spent more than $180,000 on home renovations, retail shopping trips, restaurants, and gas from 2012 to 2015.

These funds were intended for hungry children, but instead they were allegedly used for Simpson’s personal life. Simpson’s actions also directly impacted fellow charities; while she was spending $38,000 on a new gazebo, her fellow program directors were forced to pay out of their own pockets because the monthly reimbursements from Cherry Tree never arrived. These allegations must be investigated, and if proven true, I urge you to take the appropriate measure to punish the guilty parties and fix the system so that further abuse does not occur.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture

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