Indiana Locals Help Tornado Victims
April 16, 2012
When Ray Kasmark, business manager of Gary, Ind., Local 697, heard that 13 people died when tornadoes ripped through his state’s southwestern region on March 2, he thought about the floods in his own jurisdiction back in 2008.
Today, Local 697 members have joined a community effort to collect supplies needed by tornado victims more than four hours away, including food, toiletries and baby products. Between collections on job sites and trips to Costco to buy supplies, local members have helped fill trucks driven south by Teamster members.
Closer to the tornado’s path, members of Louisville, Ky., Local 369 have sent four truckloads of supplies to residents left homeless from the twister and two more to Goodwill Industries. More than $3,500 was collected at the union hall for the victims. The IBEW-NECA labor-management committee contributed $5,000. Many members have volunteered to help in clean-up efforts with the United Way and the Red Cross.
Building trades leaders asked the United Way how the trades could help tornado victims. They were referred to an elderly family that had lost their mobile home and all possessions in the tornado and were not covered by insurance. Says Local 369 Business Manager Bill Finn:
Finn, whose jurisdiction covers the majority of damaged towns, has received e-mails from IBEW districts asking how members can help. Supplies have also come in from Indianapolis Local 481, He says:
President Edwin D. Hill says:
To find out more how to help the tornadoes victims, e-mail Bill Finn at firstname.lastname@example.org.