Toronto-based telemarketer Frontline Support has been hired to raise money for a Christmas toy drive event sponsored by the Calgary Police Association (CPA).
Some people receiving those calls, like Joseph Xu, feel the callers are pushy. He was initially worried it was a scam.
When Xu got a call, he was willing to donate, but not over the phone.
He said he became suspicious when he was told he couldn’t donate through the CPA website.
“I was suspicious near the end of the conversation thinking that I might be getting scammed,” Xu said.
“They were very pushy, very persistent, wanting to get that donation. So I felt something was a little off.”
Other people told Global News the callers were abrupt and said they were confused about who was calling.
The Calgary Police Service has also responded to many people over social media explaining the calls are not from them.
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CPA president Howard Burns says they have been doing the campaign for eight years with the same marketing company and have never had a negative response.
“In past years, we haven’t generated a bunch of complaints, but something seems to have changed,” Burns said. “So I’m not sure if our service provider, Frontline, has changed their tactics, but it is something we’re monitoring.”
A statement from Frontline Support said in part: “Our staff are trained and monitored to be respectful, professional and courteous to donors and individuals who decline to contribute to the campaign.”
The CPA says the contract with the marketing company pays the association a set amount of money each year and how much Frontline makes on top of that depends on how much people donate.
Donations to the Calgary Police Association are not tax deductible.