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This Thanksgiving holiday, stay home and give generously

As always, the labor movement is stepping up to help families in need during the holidays. This is particularly important this year, with so many families struggling amid the COVID-19 pandemic with illness, unemployment, reduced work hours, and other economic hardships. The needs are great and the efforts to meet them are complicated by the necessary restrictions on social gatherings and the importance of staying home, if at all possible, during the current surge in COVID cases.

The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO is calling on all union members and community supporters to stay home, stay safe, and give generously to union-organized charitable efforts. Here are a few examples:

  The Foundation for Working Families is a nonprofit formed by the WSLC and its affiliated unions to assist union families in times of hardship or disaster. It buys gift cards to Union stores so families in need can buy groceries and other necessities. More than 1,000 families have received assistance during the pandemic, but FFWF funds have been depleted by the extreme demand. Contribute online or mail a check to the Foundation for Working Families, 321 16th Ave S., Seattle, WA, 98144. The FFWF is a 501(c)(3) organization — federal tax ID 91-1702271 — so all donations are tax-deductible charitable contributions.

Families can apply for FFWF assistance by downloading its Hardship Assistance Form. Assistance is not restricted to union members and their families, though they are given priority. For more information about the FFWF, email Karen White or call her at 360-570-5169.

  The Southwest Central Labor Council’s Presents from Partners will be a drive-thru event this year. Participating families will pick up a pre-packaged meal from Spin Catering, a bag of pre-selected toys, and gift cards in the amounts of $10 and $25. The gift cards is where you come in. Union members in Southwest Washington are urged to buy gift cards at Union grovery and retail stores in the area (NOT Walmart), and make arrangements to deliver them to SWWACLC President Shannon Myers — or 360-921-5225 — no later than Monday, Dec. 7. For more information, contact Shannon.

  Teamsters Local 117 is conducting its annual Teamsters Toy Drive. Like so much else in 2020, everything is virtual — so just go to the Teamster Toy Drive webpage and make your charitable donation and the union will purchase toys from a Union vendor and deliver them to laid-off Teamster families. You can also identify Teamster families in need.

There will be many other union-organized charitable drives going on this holiday season. Please contact your local union or Central Labor Council to find them in your community.

If you’d like your union-sponsored event publicized here at The Stand, send us the details!

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