One-day food distribution set Saturday for workers idled by Kply mill closing

PORT ANGELES — A special one-day food distribution is planned exclusively for the 126 KPly employees who haven’t worked since November.

The 126 employees at KPly’s Marine Drive plant have been “curtailed” — a timber industry term for temporarily laid off — since Nov. 2.

The employees of the Port Angeles plywood mill were originally scheduled to return to work on Jan. 7.

That date was extended to Jan. 21, and now the latest target date for returning to work is Feb. 18.

At 2 p.m. Saturday, the Port Angeles Food Bank will open exclusively for the workers and their families.

The one-day distribution is the brainchild of Jim Coates of Aberdeen, executive director of the Grays Harbor and Pacific County Food Bank Distribution Center, said Valerie Anderson, a purchasing agent and union steward at KPly.

“It was Jim’s idea,” she said.

“I didn’t ask where he was getting all this food.

“I’m just glad he’s doing it.”

The Port Angeles Food Bank is hosting the distribution.

In addition to the food, the employees will be made aware of social services available for them and their families, said Mikki Saunders, the food bank’s executive director.

“On Friday I’m going to work my butt off to get it all organized in the back,” Saunders said.

“I’m just so proud to be a part of this.

“We want to help them any way we can,” Saunders said.

“They need help, but they also have their pride and don’t want to stand in line. So we’re putting on this one-day event.”

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