by Kate Childs Graham | March 02, 2012
A tornado devastated towns and cities across Missouri, Illinois and Indiana this week. It swept through Harrisburg, Ill., killing six, flattening entire neighborhoods, and destroying buildings.
Among those killed in Harrisburg was the aunt of an AFSCME Council 31 member who works at the Illinois Youth Center. The storm destroyed at least three members’ homes. Local union leaders from the Pinckneyville, Tamms and Vienna correctional centers are assisting with rescue and clean-up and Council 31 staff is involved in recovery planning.
“What’s most impressive, though not surprising, is how quickly our members responded and how substantially they did so,” said Ed Caumiant, Council 31 Regional Director for southern Illinois. “We freed up enough staff to take care of what we need to in Harrisburg.”
You can aid in the recovery efforts by giving to the Fallen Heroes Fund. Through this fund, emergency help is available to provide relief and immediate assistance to members who were victims of the tornado.
Ty Peterson, staff representative for Council 31, described the needs on the ground in these states: “They’re out of their homes. They’re living with relatives and friends. They’re totally dependent on someone else.”