Shred-A-Thon on March 4, 2013 at 12pm

Attorney General Kilmartin and Warwick Mall Team Up to Kick Off National Consumer Protection Week
Warwick Mall to Host “Shred-a-Thon” to Help Area Residents Avoid Identity Theft

After the tremendous success of previous years’ consumer “shred-a-thons” throughout Rhode Island, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin is hosting a kick-off event at Warwick Mall to start this year’s National Consumer Protection Week.

National Consumer Protection Week, March 4-9, 2013, is a coordinated campaign to encourage consumers nationwide to take full advantage of their consumer rights and to make better-informed decisions. This year, the Attorney General is again partnering with the Rhode Island Community Food Bank in asking the public to bring a non-perishable food item when they drop off their documents.

Attorney General Peter Kilmartin noted the success of the shred-a-thons, “Each year has been more successful than the last, which shows that Rhode Islanders are really getting the message: one of the best ways to safeguard personal information is by shredding documents that contain sensitive information. Last year, we added a charitable component to the shred-a-thons by asking consumers to donate non-perishable food items for the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. The response was incredible – in addition to shredding nearly nine tons of materials, which was then recycled and kept out of Rhode Island’s landfills, we also collected over 600 pounds of food for the Food Bank. These events truly are a win-win: Rhode Islanders can prevent identity theft while helping their neighbors in need.”

The kick off shred-a-thon will take place on Monday, March 4th, 12 noon – 2 pm at the Warwick Mall, near Firestone Tire.  The shred-a-thon is free and open to the public. All consumers are invited to drop off up to two “banker boxes” of confidential documents for shredding.  As an added incentive for consumers, Warwick Mall is giving participants a Carousel token for the donation of a food item to the Food Bank.

The secure shredding service is provided by Doc Shredding Corp. Their securely locked trucks will be at the shred-a-thon events. Consumers can load their documents on the truck and will receive a “certificate of destruction” from Doc Shredding, which certifies that all confidential materials collected will be handled and destroyed with the highest degree of security. Materials will be transported back to Doc Shredding Corp.’s secure facility to be shredded to a fine confetti and baled on a large plant-based shredder. This offers the same level of security and confidentiality as mobile shredding, but is a “greener” option than having a diesel truck running continuously.

“We are very excited to once again work with the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office in helping Rhode Islanders safely dispose of confidential documents,” said Brian Johnson, President of Doc Shredding Corp. “Too often, people throw away documents that contain sensitive information, like bills and receipts. Shredding these documents is a very simple step consumers can take to protect their identity and personal information, and we are proud to participate in this important initiative. I was very pleased with the turnout last year, and that we were able to collect items for the Food Bank. This year, we are hoping to top last year’s total of 600 pounds of food collected.”

“As host to this event we would like to distribute Carousel tokens to those contributing to the Rhode Island Community Food Bank,” said Aram G. Garabedian, Co-Managing Partner of Warwick Mall.

Recognizing the increased demand on food banks across the state, the Attorney General is asking participants to once again consider bringing a non-perishable food item for the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Representatives from the Food Bank will be on-site to collect food items; most-needed food items include peanut butter, canned soups, stews and vegetables, dried or canned beans, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, tuna fish and nutritious cereal. More than 60,000 people now rely on the Rhode Island Community Food Bank’s statewide network of 163 emergency food pantries to help meet their basic food needs. Nearly one out of three persons served by the Food Bank is a child under the age of 18.

“Food banks in Rhode Island and throughout the country have seen a huge surge in demand with the difficult economy,” said Andrew Schiff, Rhode Island Community Food Bank CEO. “We greatly appreciate the Attorney General’s efforts to raise awareness, as well as much-needed food items, for the Food Bank in conjunction with this beneficial event for consumers.”

Throughout the week, the Attorney General will share tips and information daily through Twitter and his blog to help consumers protect their privacy, manage money and debt, avoid identity theft, and avoid frauds and scams.