Goodwill urges customers to hold off on donation

Stores and donation centers are closed, but people are still dropping off their stuff

VANCOUVER — How upside down are things right now?

How about this. Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette is urging people not to drop off donations.

Donations left outside a Goodwill store in Hazel Dell will go uncollected during the shutdown ordered by Gov. Jay Inslee. The retailer is asking people to please hold onto donations for now. Photo courtesy Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette
Donations left outside a Goodwill store in Hazel Dell will go uncollected during the shutdown ordered by Gov. Jay Inslee. The retailer is asking people to please hold onto donations for now. Photo courtesy Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette

Following orders from both Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown that people remain home to slow the spread of COVID-19, Goodwill made the decision on March 23 to close all of their 93 drop-off locations, along with all retail outlets until further notice.

“But, while the great majority of Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette employees are sheltering in place, donations still continue to be dropped off,” says Dale Emanuel with Goodwill. “Donations left at unattended locations may create health and other hazards, and, due to weather, may not be suitable for use.”

Those problems, Emanuel adds, could include items blowing into nearby streets or neighborhoods, creating a hazard.

Even though this Goodwill in Orchards has been closed since March 23, people are still dropping items off. The retailer is asking people to stop until they re-open. Photo courtesy Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette
Even though this Goodwill in Orchards has been closed since March 23, people are still dropping items off. The retailer is asking people to stop until they re-open. Photo courtesy Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette

Old habits may be hard to break. Last year, 4.2 donations were made to Goodwill of the Columbia Willamette, amounting to 263-million pounds of items.

“I think we have the most giving Goodwill donors in the world,” says Emanuel. “But while some are giving, some are illegally dumping, causing health and safety issues for our employees and the communities we serve.”
For updated news and information regarding Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette operations, visit: http://meetgoodwill.org/who-we-are/news-and-community/.

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