Canton, N.C. (June 16, 2023) – On June 16, 2023, employees from E2D – Eliminate the Digital Divide, a nonprofit based in Charlotte, NC, will transport free laptops to displaced workers previously employed by Pactiv Evergreen’s paper mill in Haywood County. 200 families affected by the Pactiv Evergreen mill’s closing will receive free laptop computers provided by E2D and generously donated by Lowe’s Home Improvement.
Since 1908, the Town of Canton, NC (population: 4,227) has been home to the Evergreen
Packaging Mill. As the largest employer in Haywood County, the recent news of the plant’s
abrupt closing has been devastating to hundreds of local families, many of whom have had
four generations of family work at the mill.
As part of the State of North Carolina’s response to the plant closing, E2D – Eliminate the
Digital Divide is pleased to announce that it is bringing free computers to recently displaced
workers previously employed by Pactiv Evergreen’s paper mill in Haywood County.
Working with the Haywood County NCWorks Career Center, Southwestern Workforce Development Board and the Division of Workforce Solutions within the North Carolina Department of Commerce, E2D will be participating in the Mill Town Strong Career & Resource Fair, this Friday, June 16th from 11am – 1pm at the Smoky Mountain Event Center in Waynesville.
Pat Millen, E2D’s President & Co-Founder, says, “E2D always wants to be at the intersection
where opportunity and impact meet. Our hearts go out to these families who have lost jobs.
At the same time, we know that these computers will help to jumpstart the process for reskilling
and seeking and obtaining new jobs in Haywood County.”
Randy Alexander, Lowe’s Companies Director of Community Relations, “Lowe’s is delighted
to continue to work with E2D to provide grassroots solutions to families that need digital
tools now. As a large employer in Western North Carolina, our support for these families
reflects our commitment to this community.”
“The North Carolina Department of Commerce is proud to partner with Lowe’s and E2D to help support the Canton community and the surrounding area,” said N.C. Commerce Chief Deputy Secretary Jordan Whichard. “These laptops will help ensure that impacted families have the ability to access NCWorks online services, and to connect to valuable workforce training opportunities and the many job openings available in Western North Carolina.”
“We are greatly appreciative of the laptops that E2D and Lowes are donating today to help Haywood County residents apply for new job online and advance their digital skills,” said NCDIT Deputy Secretary for Broadband and Digital Equity Nate Denny. “All North Carolinians need access to affordable speed internet, digital devices and digital literacy resources to safely participate in the modern economy.”
For more information about E2D and to learn about how you can help Eliminate the Digital Divide, visit www.e-2-d.org.