Western Queens pols collect coats for winter drive
by Benjamin Fang
Dec 22, 2016 | 2584 views | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Assemblyman-elect Brian Barnwell, State Senator Joseph Addabbo and leaders from Maspeth Federal Savings pose with the coats they collected for their winter drive.
Assemblyman-elect Brian Barnwell, State Senator Joseph Addabbo and leaders from Maspeth Federal Savings pose with the coats they collected for their winter drive.
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As the temperatures continues to dip below freezing, elected officials throughout western Queens collected more than 200 winter coats to donate to New York Cares.

“Nobody should be without the proper coats,” said Assemblyman-elect Brian Barnwell, who picked up coats from Maspeth Federal Savings on Friday. “It’s the least we can do.”

Barnwell was joined by State Senator Joseph Addabbo, whose office served as a drop-off location.

“In this time of the year, everyone’s in a giving mood,” he said. “We have a lot of needy people out there who don’t experience the holidays like we do.

“Every little bit helps, whether it’s food for our food pantries or clothing and coat drives,” Addabbo added. “We hope some people in need are benefitted by others’ generosity.”

Barnwell said in addition to their collective coat drive, each police precinct also has a bin where community members can drop off gently used jackets.

In the last week, the cold weather has intensified, capped off by snow and rain that turned city streets into slush. Barnwell said a coat drive makes perfect sense given the weather.

“So many people have coats that don’t fit them and just leave them in their closets,” he said. “So many people need coats but can’t afford them. It’s a perfect match.”

Councilman Costa Constantinides, whose office also took in coat donations from the community, also collected toys, which were wrapped and distributed to children for Toys for Tots.

“While we all know what it’s like to be cold, it’s important to keep in mind that many New Yorkers endure freezing temperatures throughout the day with no relief,” Constantinides said.

Although the officials’ coat drive has ended, Barnwell encouraged altruistic neighbors to continue donating coats throughout the winter. He said they can drop them off at their local precincts, call New York Cares or even contact the assemblyman-elect himself.

“It’s a small thing to do, but I’m glad everyone turned out in droves to do it,” Barnwell said.
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