By Nadin Abbott
December 18, 2012 (San Diego)-- it was raining and it was cold this morning at Qualcomm Stadium, as union members prepared to give 500 families the fixings for a Christmas Dinner and toys for their children.
One of the recipients was Veronica, who did not share her last name. She is a member of the ATU, local 1309. She drives transit buses for a living. We just talked for a second. But the problem Veronica has, like many other low income families in San Diego, is that she does not get enough hours to make ends meet. She is a mother of several children.
According to Lorena Gonzalez, Lorena Gonzalez, Secretary-Treasurer & CEO of the San Diego & Imperial Labor Council, AFL-CIO, Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) workers are "working part time," and struggle every month. It was not just MTS workers here today, though. Most of the unions in the county volunteered by contributing money, identifying the families in needs, and today manning the distribution time.
Dennis McNacy of the Teamsters told ECM, "We're all family. We want to help people who need some help. We try to make everybody's life better."
When I left it was raining hard. People were still all smiles, protecting the toys and food stuffs from the rain, and making this Christmas much better for some very hard working families and some of the unemployed.
According to the San Diego Food Bank, "Hundreds of thousands of people in San Diego County struggle with hunger daily. Of San Diego County’s 3.1 million residents, more than 446,000 people live below the poverty level. This equates to a household income of less than $10,890 for an individual and $22,350 for a family of four. These individuals face “food insecurity” which means that little or no food is available at home and they do not always know where they will find their next meal."