Grand Priory of Canada Knights of Malta OSJ

May 08, 2009 15:01 ET


Attention: Assignment Editor, City Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, World News Editor TORONTO, ONTARIO, MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - May 8, 2009) - National Director, Ken Neumann on behalf of the United Steelworkers (USW) Humanity Fund, presented a cheque today for $10,000 to aid victims of the devastating earthquake that rocked the central Italian city of L'Aquila on April 6.

USW's donation is in response to an appeal by the Abruzzo Help Earthquake Relief Campaign. Receiving the cheque on behalf of the Relief Campaign were Ivana Fracasso, President, Federazione Abruzzese Greater Toronto and HE Chev. Mario Cortellucci, Grand Prior of Canada.

"The needs of those in L'Aquila, who have seen their loved ones killed and injured, and their lives turned upside down, are enormous. We want to help them in their time of need," said Mr. Neumann.

The families of Abruzzo and the Italian community in Canada, are extremely grateful to the United Steelworkers of Canada. With this generous donation to the relief efforts, USW's Humanity Fund will make significant contribution to repairing the lives of so many," said Ivana Fracasso, co-chair of the Abruzzo Help Earthquake Relief Campaign.

According to the USW National Director, Canadians also feel a special solidarity with the disaster's victims. "As a Canadian trade unionist, I know that Italian working people, seeking opportunity and a better life for their children, contributed in huge numbers to the development of this country. On our building sites, in our factories and offices, universities and schools, their efforts have been enormous. A special bond with these Canadians' country of origin endures."

The April quake - tentatively measured at 6.3 on the moment magnitude scale - killed some 294 people while injuring more than 1,000 and leaving as many as 50,000 homeless. Many residents of the Abruzzo region's capital whose homes were destroyed have since resided in a tent city, while others have spent nights in sleeping cars made available by Italy's state-run railway company.

Founded by the United Steelworkers union in 1985, the Steelworkers Humanity Fund is a registered charitable organization. Union members support the fund through clauses in collective agreements which most commonly provide for a contribution of $20 per year, per union member. In a number of important collective agreements, matching contributions have been negotiated from employers.

The mandate of the Steelworkers Humanity Fund is to address issues of hunger and poverty, primarily in the developing world, through development assistance and emergency aid.

Individuals can make a personal contribution to the victims of the L'Aquila earthquake at any CIBC branch, through:

O.S.J. Charities Trust Fund for L'Aquila
Abruzzo, Italy - Earthquake
Account No. 09012 69-21310
CIBC 7765 Yonge St., Thornhill, ON L3T 2C4

Contact Information

  • Ralph Capocci, Media Coordinator
    Primary Phone: 416-722-2141
    Secondary Phone: 905-893-9117