CSEA supports Red Cross campaign

LAKE PLACID The North Country Red Cross got a hand from the states leading union in its effort to raise operating funds. CSEA President Danny Donohue presented a $3,000 check in support of the Red Cross to Chapter Executive Director Jeanie Roberts April 25. The CSEA was in town last weekend for the unions statewide occupational safety and health workshop. The union, which represents more than 265,000 members statewide and more than 12,000 working people throughout the North Country, provided $3,000 in sponsorship support for the North Country Chapters activities as part of an ongoing development campaign seeking to raise $100,000 for chapter services within the next year. For many years, CSEA has partnered with the Red Cross across the state on a variety of projects, said Donohue. There is a natural connection between CSEA and the Red Cross. Many of our members are first responders in emergencies, often working side by side with Red Cross volunteers. Many more CSEA members are active in their home communities as Red Cross volunteers themselves. Needless to say, our members recognize the importance of a strong Red Cross as a community resource and part of the first line of response in any crisis. Roberts thanked the CSEA Union for their support of the Campaign. She pointed out the importance of local support for chapters. It is the North Country Chapters responsibility to raise voluntary contributions of time and money to continue to provide the programs and services here in the community. This gift will assist the chapter in its humanitarian mission and meet the local needs daily, said Roberts. The North Country Chapter serves Clinton, Franklin and 13 towns in Essex County. Roberts said the $3,000 donation moved the chapter closer to its goal of raising $25,000 in donations, which it is raising as part of a matching grant funding program. She said a large portion of that money was coming from smaller donations from private individuals. I know that people care about us, and the services we offer, said Roberts. The chapter has until the second week in May to reach its fundraising goal. Donations may be sent to the American Red Cross, 13 Guy Way, Plattsburgh, 12901. People with questions can call 561-7280. After the check presentation, CSEA conducted a Workers Memorial Day ceremony, honoring workers who have been killed or injured on the job in the past year. Workers Memorial Day, which CSEA and AFL-CIO unions observe, takes place on April 28 annually. A bell was rung for each of the nine CSEA members killed since 2006, as family members and coworkers stood by. The ceremony culminated with the lighting of a torch. More than 800 CSEA members attended the three day safety program. Interactive workshops on a multitude of topics ranging from working in temperature extremes and confined space entry to emergency response and safe flagging procedures provided workers with techniques and tactics to address workplace hazards. This is a great place because we always feel like its at home, said Donohue, pointing out that Essex County, village and ORDA employees were all represented by the CSEA. Donohue noted the union was greener at this workshop. There (were) less printed materials and more opportunity to download presentations and other resources from our Web site both before and after the conference, said Donohue.

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