Relief efforts are in place at electrical distributors, manufacturers and reps across North America. These efforts include:
• Bill Elliott, president of Elliott Electric Supply, Nacogdoches, Texas, is urging his company’s employees to help victims of Hurricane Katrina by matching employees’ donations to the American Red Cross. Several of the company’s individual locations are also looking at ways they can help.
Greg Fitzgerald, Elliott Electric Supply’s Houston area manager, said the company is encouraging employees and customers to donate to the company’s Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund.
• W.W. Grainger, Lake Forest, Ill., has pledged more than $1 million in cash and emergency supplies such as tarps, gloves, flashlights and batteries to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund to help communities and businesses recover following the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina. The company also is encouraging its employees to contribute to the recovery efforts by providing a four-to-one match of employee gifts to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. Grainger has teams working to get emergency supplies where they are needed most and teams traveling to the affected area to serve customers out of the local branches. Other employees in Denver and Chicago are participating in the American Red Cross’ Ready When the Time Comes volunteer program to help answer calls from people in the affected communities and guide them to assistance.
• The National Electrical Manufacturers Representatives Association (NEMRA), Tarrytown, N.Y., is asking for financial assistance to build a fund that will be used to assist NEMRA members impacted by the storm and its aftermath. The association’s goal is to establish a fund that can be used to provide loans to assist members as they take care of immediate needs, and recover and rebuild their businesses. The loans would be interest free for an extended period of time and then after that time a nominal interest may be affixed to the loan. In addition, NEMRA is taking several steps to assist NEMRA members in the affected areas. The association will make a section available on its Web site where messages can be posted to and from NEMRA members in the affected areas. Also, to enable communication, e-mail individual addresses and services are available to NEMRA members who have lost computer services and internet service providers (at no charge).
• Schneider North America, Palatine, Ill., pledged $1 million to support Hurricane Katrina relief efforts in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida’s Broward and Miami-Dade counties. In addition, the Square D Foundation will match donations to these efforts from its employees in the United States.