HOOD RIVER (March 27, 2020) – Out of concern for the health and safety of public donors and club volunteers, the Hood River Lions Club has temporarily suspended collection of deposit beverage containers in Hood River.
The club removed its two bright yellow collection trailers on March 14 from locations at Hood River Supply and First Interstate Bank.
Signs at each location also explain the club’s decision.
Leonard Wood, chairman of the club’s efforts to collect deposit cans and bottles, said the club didn’t want the trailers to contribute indirectly to transmission of the COVID-19 virus. People depositing bottles could unknowingly contaminate trailers, which in turn could contaminate subsequent donors or club volunteers sorting the beverage containers for recycling.
Wood urged people who have been supporting the program to store containers until the club can confidently announce a return of its collection trailers.
“Yes, they can put them in recycling, but it benefits the community more if they donate them to us,” he said.
Since taking over and expanding the program five years ago, the club has been donating receipts to local nonprofits. Applications for grants of up to $1,000 are available at the club website (hoodriverlionsclub.org).
Wood said about $3,200 previously collected and still in club accounts was disbursed to the FISH Food Bank and the Meals on Wheels programs before suspension of collections.