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Food giveaway helps furloughed Fort Bragg workers

Posted August 8, 2013

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— Furloughed Fort Bragg employees got a little help Thursday from a food giveaway meant to fill their cupboards during lean times.

Local 1770 of the American Federation of Government Employees organized the food giveaway, which offered 20,000 pounds of nonperishable goodies bought from the Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeast North Carolina.

Boxes stacked up at Lillian Black Elementary School in Spring Lake contained enough food for 600 families.

“We decided that we needed to do something for our furloughed employees, so we came up with the idea of getting one food truck, then tossed around the idea of getting two food trucks and went with that,” said union member Mark Doorey, who is among the 8,000 civilian employees at Bragg taking unpaid leave because of federal budget cuts.

Food drive Furloughed federal workers get help at food drive

Although the Pentagon announced Tuesday that the number of furlough days would be cut from 11 to six, employees said any loss of pay hurts.

"I’ve just been juggling things, trying to make ends meet,” said Ariel Giraud, 39, who has a 7-year-old son.

Dana Trollinger, 29, has two nephews and a son who depend on her at home.

“You just make the best of it,” she said. “You can’t change it – just deal.”

Both Trollinger and Giraud said they appreciated the help offered by the union, which also opened up the food giveaway to people in the community.

“We wanted to help out our furloughed employees and pay back to them,” Doorey said. “We also weren’t going to turn away members of the community that were in need.”

Word about the giveaway spread quickly, and most of the food disappeared within a couple of hours.

“This is probably a small token of what we can do as a union to try to alleviate some of the burdens,” union member Tiffany Lawson said.


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  • XLAW Aug 9, 2013

    So, after reading this article and the comment by Ariel Giraud, I Googled her and saw the beautiful pictures of her on Facebook vacationing last week in the Bahamas. No wonder she needed the food giveaway. Probably came back broke having spent all her money there.

  • pappy1 Aug 9, 2013

    Hehehe. "Per se."

  • pappy1 Aug 9, 2013

    How dare some of you call this a stunt. After all, it was organized by the Government Employees Union - it had to be completely legit. LOLOL

  • nashville Aug 9, 2013

    Looks like the lady in the interview had plenty of money for rings,necklaces,and braclets.

  • trainloadr Aug 9, 2013

    Sympathy for the one day a week for 6 weeks. Why not be happy about the four days during these weeks that you have a job. All this is was getting something for nothing. I remember when it was embarassing to have to get a hand out now its just part of the landscape. This story is disgusting!

  • Bob3425 Aug 9, 2013

    I agree with aspenstreet1717 it a publicity stunt. I am federal employee; we had more than enough time to plan and prepare for this. This is nothing more than people looking for freebie. I rather of saw that food go to people who are unemployed and have used all their benefits than to those who overspend or can't manage their money.

  • whatelseisnew Aug 9, 2013

    "I hope you never fall on hard times and need help. How insensitive."

    Losing a few days pay is not "hard times". What these people need to do is come to the realization that they have to make some changes. If they do not, then this will be their permanent reality. One paycheck away from not eating. Too many people live like that, and far more of them that think otherwise, CAN make changes that will vastly improve their circumstance. It is simply a matter of making the decision to do it. Step 1. DO NOT USE YOUR PLASTIC MONEY unless you pay the resulting bill in full every month. In other words, get out of debt.

  • aspenstreet1717 Aug 8, 2013

    This is bizarre. A few days off and they're at a food bank?? It sounds like a publicity stunt.

  • mep Aug 8, 2013

    mep, I hope you never fall on hard times and need help. How insensitive. Not every federal employee makes a huge salary. And it's nice to finally see someone who actually works but needs help get a handout, instead of it always being the ones who sit on their behinds all day and do nothing.

    Actually... I lost EVERYTHING in the recession of 1992. Took a long time and hard work to get to a place where I should never have to depend upon the govt or charity for basic survival. Now living debt free less the mortgage, a years worth of monthly bill money in savings, a good retirement savings... AND I give over 10% of my gross income to charities like the Raleigh Rescue Mission. Having a "union" come to the very people they exploit for political purposes (press) is just evil.

    Living paycheck to paycheck is not living. ANYONE working full time, especially as a unionized Federal contractor can do better!!!

  • superman Aug 8, 2013

    I think for a couple dollars I could buy a big bag of rice and some margarine and make it ok. Get a box of spagetti and chicken cubes and make some soup. Anyone who cant make it for 6 days without a food handout is in bad shape. If I can pay my bills I will surely find a way to eat. The American people have gotten to the point they expect handouts.