Honor helpers (updated)

Feb. 4. Thanks to the UFT. After reading this, someone knew of this picture taken of Tim Grady.

Tim Grady wheels flood-damaged merchandise out of a deli damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

The Workforce Development Institute has paired with the state AFL-CIO to document the union members, workers and volunteers who helped relief efforts of Super Storm Sandy. Here’s a link filled with information. They are collecting photos of the devastation from the storm, as well as stories about what we are all doing to help. The WDI is giving free workshops to help people write their stories. They will be at 9 a.m., noon and 6 p.m. on Jan. 30 and Feb. 6. All will be at the UAW conference room on the 12th floor at 256 West 38th St. in New York City.

If you have any questions, call Sue Hains at (518) 272-3500, ext. 105, or Sonia Ivany at (212) 777-6040.

If you were impacted by the October superstorm, please consider sharing your story. The group does an excellent job capturing the perspectives of workers today.

Please also consider sending them photos. A lot of folks, like Tim Grady of the Schoharie Employees Association, did not even think about taking pictures.

“It was just so sad. It’s not something I wanted to take pictures of,” said Grady, who is in his sixth year driving a school bus in Schoharie. He grew up in Staten Island, and was one of those who volunteered to help in Staten Island. “In fact, one of the houses we helped to clean out is the parents of one of my friends.”  Here’s a slideshow the UFT put together of efforts that day.

Grady went back on his own over the holidays to visit two sisters and a brother, who luckily were spared major damage, and to help again. “The commercial businesses, the stores, so many still closed. It’s just like Schoharie,” he said, noting how many upstate businesses struggle to reopen after August and September storms of 2011. “I told my sisters and brother ‘This is your Lotto’ because not having to rebuild and replace all your possessions and memories is like winning the lottery.” This is a good time to remind you that funds are still needed to help NYSUT members rebuild and here’s the link for how you can help.

Back to the Workforce Development Institute — realize they are protecting the integrity of each submission and be aware you’ll have to fill out some forms that allow them to showcase your photos.

Photos and stories will make it into an exhibit to be shown in New York City and in Albany. We’ll update once we know the locations and dates.

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