MIS Cuts Ties With Red Cross For Country's Largest Blood Drive - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

MIS Cuts Ties With Red Cross For Country's Largest Blood Drive

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - Every year, the Red Cross partners with the Spirit of America, helping to give blood to those in need, but this year, unions interfered with the partnership.

The Spirit of America event began 11 years ago to honor the families who lost loved ones in the September 11th attacks. But last year, the country's largest blood drive, hosted by Michigan International Speedway, had to cut ties with the Red Cross when their workers decided to strike.

This year, when Spirit of America organizers reached out to the Red Cross for a possible partnership, the Red Cross couldn't deliver. In a statement from the Red Cross, two labor unions prevented the partnership between the Red Cross and the speedway when the unions refused to promise not to disrupt the event.

Sammie Lukaskiewicz, the senior director of communications with the Michigan International Speedway says they couldn't take that chance. "When we went back to them this year to see if they wanted to be involved, they couldn't guarantee that the blood drive wouldn't be disrupted. So we had to move on. We do too much work and there are too many people involved for it to just be canceled as a result of a labor dispute."

Representatives from one of the unions tells 6 News they have no intention of disrupting the drive. No matter the union or the blood service organization, on September 11th, Spirit of America wants you to remember one thing.

"Just doing something for your community to remember this is something that you need to do. Whether it's through the Red Cross or whether it's Michigan Blood, giving blood helps people who need it," said Lukaskiewicz



This year, MIS will continue the drive, partnering with Michigan Blood. It's not too late to make an appointment to donate. Visit Seen on 6 for more information.

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