PATERSON, NJ - More families across Paterson and Passaic County will have a Thanksgiving meal on their tables this week thanks to the volunteer efforts of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 827, Hudson Unit.

Partnering with their employer, Verizon, the union and its members donated over 6,000 pounds of food to the Father English food pantry on Friday.

According to Tom Kelly, business agent for the local union that represents workers across the state, the food was collected at 10 Verizon locations where the Local 827 members work. Some locations also made monetary contributions used to purchase additional food. 

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After speaking to a representative from the food bank, and learning of the dire need, Kelly told TAPinto Paterson, the union leadership gathered and made a unanimous decision to once again do what they could to help struggling families in need. This is the third, and biggest, food drive Local 827 has undertaken, Kelly said, this time partnering with Verizon, a factor that “reinforces that both organizations have placed a priority on community service and giving back.”

“Both Local 827 and Verizon have committed to continuing this partnership going forward to benefit, not just Paterson, but communities all around New Jersey,” Kelly said. “This food drive is a testament to my member's continuous generosity, Verizon’s commitment to the community, and our ability to work together for the benefit of others in need.”

Father English isn’t the only place where Local 827’s commitment to the committee is evident, Kelly added, pointing to the leadership of Chief Stewards Pat Glover and Andy Newman who have “repeatedly answered any call for help over the last three years.”

Whether supporting their fellow members facing catastrophic illness, providing storm relief, or collecting food Kelly said, his members are always ready to pitch in. “It’s a little surreal when you see the generosity exhibited no matter the cause great or small over and over again. It’s very humbling to be a part of.”

”It was really an amazing outpouring and really reinforced that this partnership with the I.B.E.W. is already reaping benefits for our groups and  the communities we serve, Sean Coffey, director of field operations for Verizon said. ”At Verizon we don’t want to be known as just another service provider, our people live and work in our communities and volunteer and donate every day, this donation just reinforces that we’re part of the community. We look forward to this partnership helping communities around New Jersey in the future."

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