We threaten litter louts with fines and demand councils install extra bins and clean the streets more often. But what if, instead, every person who saw a discarded crisp bag, can or cigarette packet just picked it up? Would that be the end of the world?
Ward Representative Elizabeth Turpin, said,
If somebody else starts picking up litter, you’ll start picking up litter – if nobody does and they all walk past it, you’ll walk past it. Today we took the lead and many local residents thanked us for doing it.
Cllr. John Williams added,
Once somebody starts to do something, others start to do it. We walk past the litter and look afterwards for reasons why… whether they’re true or not. I see this all the time – people won’t do anything to help,
Their attitude is, ‘I didn’t drop it, why would I pick it up?’
Cllr. Gary Etheridge remarked that,
The Clean for the Queen was the first national litter-picking campaign for 10 years and it had been a long time since the message about anti-littering has got out there to any audience. People have asked, why should they do what they pay their council to do?
But, as local authorities are facing budget cuts and making choices between departments, some would argue it is ill-natured to step over litter and say it is someone else’s job to pick it up. After all, it’s you that have to live with it.