Local food pantries see decline because of RTA driver strike

The Good Neighbor House received a food donation totaling 5,000 pounds.

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – While the majority—68 percent— of people who ride the RTA use it to get to and from work, the other 38 percent use it to get to school and other locations like food pantries, which have already seen a decline.

Good Neighbor House said they’ve noticed a huge drop in the number of people coming in to their facility as a result of the strike.

“It’s significant, we can notice there’s a difference here,” Good Neighbor House, Executive Director Tom Onjukka said.

Onjukka said they can sometimes see up to 40-45 families per day, but with the start of the strike the normally busy food pantry was fairly quiet.

“We have about 100 people a week that rely on the RTA bus system for transportation to get here and we’re basically a safety net for many of these people and without that transportation they can’t get the services that we offer,” Onjukka said.

It’s not just families in need of food that are feeling the effects of the RTA driver work stoppage, Onjukka said their volunteers are also having a hard time making their way there.

The food pantry distributes close to a ton of food per day.  Good Neighbor House said they are going to have to make some adjustments if this strike is prolonged, but it’s unclear at this time what those changes will be.

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