Deseret Industries is a branch of the Church Welfare Program of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Deseret Industries operates a chain of 44 thrift stores located in many parts of the western United States, where there are large concentrations of Mormons. In other parts of the world, many Mormons donate their used clothing to thrift stores such as operated by the Salvation Army and Goodwill Industries.
Deseret Industries Thrift Stores contain mainly items of clothing but also have other items such as furniture. Businesses and individuals donate the clothing, which is either used or new. These thrift stores are open to the public and the items are sold at inexpensive prices. For needy church members, the items are supplied free of charge. Church members are expected to pay back in some way to the church for receiving these items, such as doing some work for the church.
There are few paid employees at Deseret Industries. For those who are paid by the church, the salaries are famously low. Most of the labor for Deseret Industries comes from volunteer church members. Some of the people who work at Deseret Industries are needy people who receive job training in order to find jobs outside of Deseret Industries. From 1998 to 2002, over 8,000 people received job training at Deseret Industries and found employment outside of Deseret Industries. Some of these people who were helped to find jobs are physically and/or mentally challenged. The Humanitarian Center located in Salt Lake City, Utah is also operated by Deseret Industries.
- Jim Wall, 2004 Church Almanac published by Deseret Morning News, 2004 Salt Lake City, Utah, pages 135-137
This article was written on September 12/2007