A Boston police officer stands guard at a memorial site at Boylston and Arlington streets along the course of the Boston Marathon on April 16, a few blocks from where two explosions struck near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on April 15. The Boston Federal Executive Board wants to set up a special one-time charity drive to allow federal employees to donate to victims of Monday's marathon bombing and their families. (AFP)
The Boston Federal Executive Board wants to set up a special one-time charity drive to allow federal employees to donate to victims of Monday’s marathon bombing and their families.
Boston FEB Executive Director Kim Ainsworth said the FEB will ask the Office of Personnel Management as early as Wednesday for permission to launch the solicitation, which would be separate from the government’s Combined Federal Campaign fundraising.
Under one-time solicitations, agencies can choose a charity or charities involved in relief efforts and collect donations for them. OPM last authorized a special solicitation in November, after Superstorm Sandy.
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Tom Menino on Tuesday announced the creation of a new charity, One Fund Boston, to help victims and their families. Ainsworth said she was not sure whether the federal government’s solicitation would raise money for that fund or other charities.
“We want to make sure people have a choice,” Ainsworth said.
Ainsworth said she knew of one federal employee — an off-duty Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention and removal officer — who received noncritical wounds in the twin bomb attacks. She did not know whether that officer has yet been discharged from a hospital. Three people, including an 8-year-old boy, were killed in the attack, and more than 170 were injured.
The Federal Protective Service placed all Boston federal buildings on a high-level security alert shortly after the bombings Monday, which meant visitors were not allowed to enter. Several federal buildings in downtown Boston also closed on Monday.
Ainsworth said all Boston-area buildings reopened at their usual times and began admitting visitors on Tuesday, with enhanced security measures that are still in place. All federal employees and visitors are being screened before entering the buildings, she said, which is creating longer lines at building entrances.
“It’s not business as usual,” Ainsworth said.