March of Diapers: Union to aid low-income families
SEATTLE — Volunteers with Machinists Union District Lodge 751 are once again teaming with community activists to bring help to low-income families and families in crisis around Puget Sound.
District 751’s Machinists Volunteer Program is partnering with the group Many Communities for the third annual March of Diapers drive.
The drive is an effort to collect disposable diapers and wipes to donate to families living in women’s shelters as well as organizations that support low-income families in King, Pierce and Snohomish counties.
Over the past two years, members of District 751 and Machinists Union District Lodge 160 have combined to collect nearly 25,000 diapers and pull-ups, and 9,000 baby wipes.
“Our good union wages mean we can take care of our own families, with enough left over to help other families in our communities too,” said IAM 751 MVP Committee Chairwoman Princie Stewart. “Please help us as we make a difference, one little tushy at a time.”
Diapers can be a critical need for women living trying to escape from domestic violence or families that are living in poverty. Even though they are a basic need, diapers are not covered by social safety net programs because they are considered “hygene items,” said Many Communities chairwoman Cheryl Hurst.
“Social service agencies that try to help these families have chronic shortages of diapers,” Hurst said. “If you’re living in a shelter — or even in your car — cloth diapers simply aren’t an option. So families try to make do, going with one diaper a day, or even trying to rinse out and reuse disposable diapers.”
Donations of diapers — from Premies to Size 6 — will be taken at all IAM 751 union halls around Puget Sound from March 1-31. In addition, diapers, pull-ups and wipes can be brought to these Many Communities partner sites:
- Edgewood — 2nd Peek Boutique, 727 E. Meridian Ave.;
- Federal Way — Sub Zero Ice Cream, 31653 Pacific Highway S.; Roger Flygare & Associates, 1715 S. 324th Place; and Umpqua Bank, 1900 S. 320th St.;
- Maple Valley — Red Dog Saloon, 18605 Renton-Maple Valley Road; and Four Corners Bar & Grill, 26905 Maple Valley-Black Diamond Road SE; and
- Sumner — Sozo Realty, 816 Cherry Ave.
All diapers, pull-ups and wipes collected will go to Mary’s Place in Seattle, The Multi-Service Center of Federal Way, Foster Champs of Maple Valley, CareNet Pregnancy Centers of Puget Sound, Edgewood Community Fish Food Bank and Pregnancy Aid of Snohomish County.
Originally formed in 1935 by hourly workers at the Boeing Co., District Lodge 751 of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers now represents more than 31,000 working men and women at 53 employers across Washington and California.