Updated Sept. 10, 2014 at 12:30 p.m.
NEW BRITAIN — The Spanish Speaking Center of New Britain on Tuesday said Greater Hartford residents should be beware of deceptive business practices from the multi-level marketing company, Herbalife.
Representatives from the small faith-based community organization that has been serving low and moderate income families since 1964, said the organization’s campaign is “to raise awareness and provide information about the resources available to assist those who have lost money to the nutritional products and weight loss supplement maker.”
They said consumer fraud is pervasive in the Latino community that those who are being deceived are afraid to come forward.
“I am deeply troubled by the stories I am hearing from members of this community who have invested their hard-earned time and money into Herbalife,” said SSCNB Executive Director Mary L. Sanders. “The Spanish Speaking Center of New Britain wants those who have lost money to Herbalife, which is often framed as a get-rich-quick business opportunity, to know that they are not alone—and that resources are available to assist them.”
“I lost over $2,000 of my savings in Herbalife,” said Nereida Duran, a former Herbalife distributor. “I experienced tremendous pressure to recruit more and more individuals in order to move up the ladder. The promises I was given included cruises, vacations and a great income. In the end, I never once received a check from Herbalife. I encourage others who had experiences like mine to come forward today.”
Herbalife has refuted claims of fraud. According to a press release to The Hartford Guardian.
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“The allegations being made today are misguided and entirely incorrect, and we would welcome an opportunity to educate everyone involved in order to correct the misinformation and misperceptions they have been given about Herbalife.
As has been documented in the press repeatedly, Herbalife has been the target of a manufactured and misleading campaign by a Wall Street hedge fund manager with the hope of putting the company out of business to enrich himself and to the detriment of thousands of members, customers, employees and investors. Unfortunately, this campaign continues today.
There is nothing new here. The data offered is inaccurate and the allegations are ill founded. Herbalife stands behind the quality of our products and our commitment to member satisfaction and consumer protection. Herbalife’s ‘Gold Standard’ consumer-protection rules provide all members with industry-leading protections including low startup costs, a 100% money-back guarantee for unsold products within 12 months of purchase, clear and accurate product information with business opportunity guidelines and a written acknowledgement of these protections. The company’s ‘Gold Standard’ rules not only meet, but exceed the standards prescribed by the Direct Selling Association (DSA), of which the Company is a long-time member in good standing.
Herbalife is very proud of its presence in Connecticut, supporting nearly 4,000 independent members throughout the state. Their success is a tribute to the hard work of our members and a clear demand to live a healthy lifestyle.”