Waste collectors’ refusal stinks

FIRST THEY collect didn’t the bins. Now they won’t.

Greyhound Recycling’s decision not to collect refuse from 18,000 households from Thursday – unless they sign up for their service –  risks sinking Dublin into a ocean of rubbish.

An initial reaction may be to marvel at Greyhound’s cheek.

After all this was the company who, after being awarded with the contract to take over the City Council’s waste collection, failed to make bin collections – leaving wastebags lying on the city streets.

Greyhound claimed all bins were collected on time – but Dublin’s City Manager conceded that three out of ten households did not have their waste collected in the first week of last month’s handover.

It’s one thing to miss a few households in the first week, but to cut off collection from 18,000 is a serious move.

It result in waste festering outside houses and business, something that’s not just unsightly but could also pose a health risk.

While Greyhound’s record to date has been less than exemplary there is no doubt where responsbility for the impending rubbish crisis lies.

Blame for the mess – like the uncollected bags of rubbish  – should be placed firmly at the door of non-paying households.

With waivers for 33,000 customers and an instalment plan for those short of money to refusing to pay up is simply a blinkered move. It’s selfish too because someone – likely the taxpayer – will have to pick up the eventual bill to remove the waste.

City councillors should think twice before advising people to withhold  the fee. Suggestions of leaving rubbish at recycling centres in Grangorman and the North Strand may simply transform those areas into urban landfills.

And Greyhound’s move affects every householder. You might have diligently signed up and paid but if you’re neighbours have not then you’ll be likely picking trash from your front garden next week regardless.

As well as transforming Dublin’s streets into de facto dumps the decision will inevitably lead to an explosion of fly-tipping. Which will, in turn, will place further pressure on strained City Council resources.

With two days to go it’s unlikely even a majority of the Greyhound’s missing 18,000 households will sign up.

Prepare for dear, dirty Dublin to get a lot dirtier.

This post first appeared in the Evening Herald, February 14, 2012.

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