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State Agency Asks Employees to Pick Up Hotel Soap for Homeless

August 23, 1990

CHICAGO (AP) _ A state agency’s request that public-aid employees take unused soap bars and shampoo bottles from hotels and motels and save them for the homeless has the hotel industry foaming.

A division of the state Department of Public Aid has adopted a policy asking its workers to contribute voluntarily. An agency-wide policy might be next, Kathleen Kustra, the department’s director, said Tuesday.

″It is something we want to look at,″ Mrs. Kustra said. ″One division has sent out a notice that it will act as a collection point if people want to do that.″

But the Hotel-Motel Association of Illinois objected, and said a better policy might be to ask the hotels for contributions.

″Where would you draw the line?″ asked Arnold Karr, the association’s executive director. ″The next thing that will be taken will be the other amenities: glasses, towels, bath mats, throw rugs and furniture.″

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