GOFUNDME bills itself as a crowdfunding site where visitors can discover “Amazing Stories from Incredible People”. A swift scroll through the projects does yield some impressive stories—a special-needs teacher who got hit by a car trying to save her students; a retired pilot who is battling a debilitating illness—alongside noble efforts to raise money for these people. So perhaps it is not surprising that some visitors were taken aback by the fundraising page created for Bailey (pictured), who needed money to help pay for her abortion.
Bailey’s GoFundMe page let users know that she is 23, “unemployed, completely broke, in debt, and in no position to hold down a job due to severe symptoms of a rough, unplanned and unexpected pregnancy.” Though the page had earned a lot of nasty attention from online commenters, it also raised more than $2,100 towards its $2,500 goal—until the site’s administrators took it down earlier this month. In an e-mail to Bailey, GoFundMe explained that her page had received “a high number of complaints” and that the company, as a result, would “rather not be associated” with it. On September 9th the site published a new round-up of rules banning raising funds for all sorts of projects, including anything associated with hate groups, violence, body mutilation or breaking the law. Among these new guidelines are restrictions on raising money for the “termination of life”, including abortion (“human or animal”).