Community Forklift COVID-19 Updates

April 3, 2020

You’ve probably heard that COVID-19 has been hard for small businesses and non-profits and as both of these things Community Forklift is no exception. Last Monday, with the Maryland Governor’s order to close businesses to protect public health, we made the decision to severely reduce our store hours. As the main source of free and low-cost essential home repair supplies for many in our community, we want to ensure the safety of our staff and customers but also remain open to provide this service.

The saddest part of this situation is that for the first time in Community Forklift history, we had to lay off a significant number of our amazing staff. Part of our mission is to create good green jobs and our staff is family, but we are primarily self-funded and the pandemic-related decrease in sales gave us no other choice. We are applying for disaster relief and — if funded — we hope to hire back some staff.

Community Forklift and the green economy need your support now more than ever. Here’s how you can help!

Community Forklift online stores are open 24 hours a day. Browse thousands of new and vintage items, from appliances and art to tile and tools. We have shipping and no-contact “loading-dock-side” pickup available!

If you’re in urgent need of home improvement supplies, visit our nonprofit reuse warehouse and get them for less than retail. Until further notice, our warehouse hours will be 12 – 3 pm Monday through Friday and 12 – 4 pm Saturday & Sunday. We need to liquidate as much of our product as possible so stay tuned for some amazing deals. Visit our website and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter for the latest news.

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit and your donations to us are tax-deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law. Every little bit will help us fulfill our mission to promote reuse and provide free and low-cost home essentials for our community. Visit our website for more information.

Getting a gift card now will provide us with funds that we need to stay open and continue supporting the community.

Please be patient with us in the warehouse and while waiting for responses to messages and questions. We are operating with a skeleton crew and are doing our best to get to you!

We hope that with your help, we can welcome back our staff to the warehouse and reopen even stronger! Forklift Strong! Thank you for your continued support and for being a part of the Forklift Community.

March 23, 2020

Today Governor Hogan closed all non-essential businesses in the state of Maryland. As an essential provider of low-cost home repair materials, Community Forklift plans to remain open for limited hours to serve the community. Store hours will be posted on our website on a week-by-week basis.

Monday, March 23: 9am to 7pm
Tuesday-Friday, March 24-27: 12 to 2pm
Saturday & Sunday, March 28 & 29: 12 to 4pm

We will still be accepting donations at our nonprofit reuse warehouse during the hours it is open. Please do NOT leave donations outside our warehouse when we are closed. Donation pick-ups have been temporarily suspended.

Both the Home Essentials and Community Building Blocks programs will continue to operate. Visit the warehouse while it is open in order to pick up your materials. If you are a grant recipient and are not feeling well, please call our program manager to reschedule your appointments.

We will continue to take CDC-recommended COVID-19 precautions. Please do NOT enter the warehouse if you are sick or at a high risk of getting very sick (learn what to do if you are sick here).

Community members depend on us for everyday needs and as a small business and non-profit we are doing our best to provide these services. Please be patient when expecting answers to questions by phone, email, or social media. As always, thank you for your support. We are so proud to be a part of this community.

March 20, 2020

To avoid attracting a large crowd, Community Forklift has cancelled our annual garden party and will instead gradually release garden materials for sale beginning March 21 at 9am. Visit our blog to find out more.

March 16, 2020

Community Forklift is committed to staying open as a community resource as long as it is safe to do so. We are taking all precautions recommended by the CDC and are paying close attention to the situation. Please stay home if you are sick or at a high risk of getting very sick (learn what to do if you are sick here). Read on to learn how we are addressing health authorities’ recommendations.

Social Distancing: our 40,000 sq. ft. warehouse provides ample room to keep a 6-ft distance from one another. There are not typically large numbers of people in the building.

Wash Your Hands: a regularly disinfected sink is available in our restroom for hand washing. We also have hand-sanitizing stations available and an ample supply of hand sanitizer.

Clean and Disinfect: we are regularly disinfecting often-touched items in the warehouse including doorknobs, countertops, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

Employee Health: Community Forklift employees have always had generous healthcare benefits and paid sick leave. We are requiring employees to stay home if they are sick.

We are aware that community members depend on us for everyday needs and that our employees depend on us for paychecks and healthcare. This is a difficult situation for everyone and as a small business and non-profit we are doing our best to provide these services to our community and employees. If you’d like to help support our mission remotely, please consider shopping online or buying a gift card. Thank you!

March 12, 2020

At Community Forklift, your well-being is always our first priority. We aim to serve by staying open as a community resource and will continue to monitor the situation for any new developments. We will make announcements via our website and social media and have taken steps to increase safety and cleanliness in our warehouse.

Community Forklift has always provided health insurance and generous paid time off to our staff and we have encouraged them to stay home if they are not feeling well. This continues to be a priority as we care about the health of our employees and the safety of our community.

We are taking precautions around the warehouse to wipe down and disinfect touch points, carts, and cash registers, and have installed additional hand sanitizing stations. We have temporarily discontinued our free coffee service.

Home Essentials grant recipients and the most vulnerable among us may be hard-hit by the economic impact of the COVID-19 response. Access to Home Essentials and Community Building Blocks programs will still be available. However, if you are a grant recipient and are not feeling well, please call our program manager and reschedule your appointments for a later date.

Community Forklift will continue to accept donations in our well-ventilated warehouse. Our trucks will run our free pick-up service as scheduled. You can shop at our nonprofit reuse center or visit us online and shop our eBay, Chairish, or Community Forklift Marketplace stores.

We thank you for your support and are proud to serve the residents of Prince George’s County and the DC Metropolitan area.