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GoFundMe Removes Fundraiser for Dying Texas Sheriff Deputy After Wife Posts About Ivermectin (Part 5)
Erin and Jason Jones cannot access $36,000 in funds for medical and legal bills
EXCLUSIVE SERIES: This is part five in an exclusive 10-part series on a dying Texas Sheriff Deputy suing for the right to try Ivermectin for COVID. To catch up, read part four here: Shock Ruling on Ivermectin: Texas Appeals Court Says Hospital Has Final Say on Refusing Drug to Dying Sheriff Deputy (Part 4)
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GoFundMe removed the online fundraiser for the family of Texas Sheriff Deputy Jason Jones after his wife posted an update about her legal efforts to get Ivermectin. GoFundMe said the content falls under the “prohibited conduct” section.
The company gave no warning and deleted the link from its website on Nov. 17. Jones is dying of COVID-19 at Texas Huguley Hospital in Fort Worth.
Fundraiser for family of six
Since I first made their names public on Nov. 12 and linked to the fundraiser to help the Jones family, the GoFundMe account went from a couple of thousand dollars to $36,000 in donations from around the country.
Erin, who is a stay-at-home mother of six, texted me today about the $36,000 in funds at GoFundme: “I don’t know if I will get any of the donations?”
Erin told me that a friend of her lawyer, Jerri Ward, wrote the update about the legal case over the medication Ivermectin that was posted Wednesday night. (Scroll down to the bottom to read it.)
It’s unclear what the company considers the “prohibited conduct” in the GoFundMe Terms of Service.
The Jones family’s legal bills have increased again because Texas Huguley Hospital appealed her court order to give her husband the Ivermectin prescribed by Dr. Mary Bowden. The appeal court ruled Thursday night against the Jones family. Erin is trying to get her husband moved to another facility.
Erin’s best friend, Christina Adams, set up the fundraiser the day that Jason was put on a ventilator at Texas Huguley Hospital. This is the email GoFundMe sent Christina about taking down the account:
GoFundMe did not respond to my requests for comment from its media relations department about the “prohibited conduct.” (Update: GoFundMe responded after the publication of this article. It is at the bottom of the story.)
Money from ‘Angels’
“I told Erin in the beginning, ‘I know it seems bleak and dark, but don’t miss angels coming your way. You are going to be carried through this one way or another,’” Christina told me in a phone interview on Thursday.
Christina told me that she has lost two husbands, one from a long illness.
“I knew Erin was going to be in a situation with six kids,” she said about why she started the GoFundMe. “I set it up so we could spread it on Facebook. The original goal was to raise $10,000 while Jason was out of work for a month or two.”
Jason got COVID in September and has been in a medically-induced coma since Oct. 7.
Erin’s friends and family asked Christina to increase the goal to $50,000 as a way to try to get more donations as Jason’s hospitalization went on longer than expected.
Still, there was only $3,000 in it when I first wrote about this family by name last week.
Christina said that since big news outlets have picked up on the Jones family’s legal battle to get Ivermectin, there was a dramatic increase in donors in the past two days. She said that donations went up to $8,000 on Tuesday from 100 donors. On Wednesday, the fund went to $36,000 with 500 donors. But at 7:40 pm, the fundraiser was suddenly removed.
“I sat here and sobbed yesterday when I saw $35,000 come into her account in an hour because people do have love and want to help,” said Christina. “Now all I care about is getting the money and supporting that family.”
GoFundMe Goes Down
“I was watching it go up by the thousands, and I refreshed the page, and it said ‘campaign not found.’ They completely deleted it,” said Christina. “I have no access to see the donors, the comments. I have no access to the money in his account.”
Christina got the email (at the top of my story) from GoFundMe at 7:41 pm that the fundraiser was deleted because the most recent update violated the terms of service.
GoFundMe’s sudden removal of the fundraiser has cost the Jones family. Christina said donors are alarmed by the broken link. “People message me asking what happened, and they are going back and getting their donation refunded. One guy took back his $50 today,” she told me.
Where are the donations?
Christina got this email on Thursday after we spoke:
Erin has not yet gotten the money. She had set up automatic monthly withdrawals before she was shut out of the account. The next withdrawal would be due Dec. 7. She doesn’t know if GoFundMe is waiting until then to deposit the money. Neither she nor Christina have gotten a reply from the company.
Erin doesn’t want to re-post on GoFundMe. She wants to use the Christian website “Give Send Go” to raise money to pay her legal bills to enforce the Texas law on the “right to try.” The new fundraiser for the Jones family is at Give Send Go here.
But Erin’s only goal is to save her husband’s life. “I am positive that with all of the help from everyone — like Christina said ‘angels’ — he will be healed and come home,” she texted me Thursday. “I am standing firm in faith on that!”
UPDATE: GOFUNDME RESPONDS:
A spokesman for GoFundMe emailed me this statement on Nov. 19:
I can confirm that a fundraiser titled “Jason Jones and Family” was reviewed and found to be in violation of GoFundMe’s terms of service; $36,453 was raised prior to the fundraiser’s removal, and all funds are available to be released to the Jones family.
I replied with these questions:
1) What specifically violated the terms of service that are considered "prohibited conduct"?
2) When will the money be transferred to Mrs. Jones's account?
3) Why did you delete the account without giving Christina Adams a warning?
4) How can Christina Adams or Erin Jones see the comments to them?
5) How many people withdrew their donations since you took down the link?
The company did not respond to these questions.
The GoFundMe post from Erin Jones on Nov. 17
I'm on a mission to save my husband's life,” Erin Jones stated, on an NBC 5 news story in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. That quote alone says it all.
In what could be a landmark case for patient rights, the Jones family is fighting not just for access to legal medicine, but for the very life of husband and father Jason Jones. Fortunately, Jason Jones, the sole breadwinner for his family of seven, is a fighter. He has served the public for 28 years in law enforcement and is currently a Tarrant County Deputy Sheriff.
But once he beats COVID, there will be mountains of medical expenses, rehabilitation facility costs, recovery time out of work -- and now legal fees.
After months of unsuccessful approaches to helping Jason kick COVID and its aftermath, the family has decided to insist on the administration of the Ivermectin protocol. Erin, Jason’s wife, therefore, went to a Tarrant County District Court to obtain the treatment by a mandatory injunction. Lawyers for the Jones's have won a temporary injunction to compel the hospital to give emergency privileges to a doctor who has saved lives with the Ivermectin protocol. However, the hospital immediately appealed to the Second Court of Appeals.
The Jones family needs immediate help with legal costs to continue to fight for his right to receive treatment of his choice while confined in a hospital. The hospital claims that he can't be transferred, while denying him access to the doctor and treatment of his choice. The hospital has appealed the temporary injunction granted by the trial court and is expected to continue to resist, even if Jason Jones wins at the Appellate level.
The outcome of this case could impact the rights of all Texans to obtain the treatment and doctors of their choice. At the same time, they are confined in hospitals that refuse to deviate from protocols imposed by hospital administrations and government bureaucrats.
Ivermectin, perfectly legal in many countries, including the United States, and an increasingly popular alternative treatment, is rejected by the medical establishment in the U.S, even though the National Institute of Health lists it as an acceptable treatment for Covid 19. The preferred drug by Texas Hospitals, Remdesivir, earns hospitals an extra 20% of the entire hospital bill incurred by Covid 19 patients. As such, Texas Health Huguley Hospital is denying the family permission to use the Ivermectin protocol to treat Jason, though the doctors believe that he has a very low chance of survival under the present protocol used by the hospital.
Yet the clock is ticking. Jason needs access to the Ivermectin protocol to treat his worsening condition.
Prayers are definitely appreciated. Another very real need at the moment is a donation in any amount! Every cent given will not only help Jason, but possibly tens of thousands of other families in this same predicament.
Keep reading this exclusive series in part 6
Thank you to my paid subscribers who are supporting me to be the voice for those who are up against powerful companies and the medical establishment. I appreciate your belief in the value of a free press, even if it’s just one person.
Fundraiser for Jason Jones and Family on Give Send Go
Texas Health Huguley Hospital website
Dr. Jason A. Seiden, MD, FCCP practice NTX Lung and Sleep
Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) website