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Top Stories This Week in the Chronicle.
January 28, 2005

After initial denial, Max & Erma's will allow AIDS fundraiser

Louisville, Ky.--Max and Erma�s will allow an AIDS coalition to make use of its fundraising program, despite an earlier rejection, and will donate additional funds directly to the group.

The AIDS Services Center Coalition of Louisville tried to take part in the restaurant chain�s program, which donates 20 percent of the cost of meals purchased when customers turn in special tickets.

Coalition board member Linda Underwood was told by Sandy McPhillips, community relations director for Max & Erma�s Kentucky operations, that they had �negative political fallout� from previous AIDS fundraisers and didn�t allow them, the Louisville Courier Journal reported January 26.

However, no such �fallout� ever occurred, said Erin Gaines, director of advertising and regional marketing for the 98-resturant chain based in Columbus.

�We have never received �negative political fallout� from any of our benefits,� she said. Louisville�s three locations are booked up for the next two months, she noted, but they should let later availability be known.

�We don�t have any policy against partnering with AIDS organizations,� Gaines stated emphatically.

The company offered to donate $1,000 to the coalition, and is willing to schedule fundraisers at all three locations.

Underwood, however, would like the company to make sure that all its employees know their policies.

�Just . . . act like decent human beings,� she said.

Captain�s Quarters, another Louisville restaurant, offered to donate 20% of its proceeds through February 6 to the coalition.



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