Littering is a nasty side effect of our convenience-oriented disposable culture. Why in the world would people throw their garbage on the sidewalk and out of their car windows? We could make a list of the reasons – entitlement, laziness, carelessness. And, of course, we agree that we should change this behavior through education; however, education alone won’t clean up our roadways.
Littering is everyone’s problem, and it comes at a cost. Litter has an effect on business and tourism. The burden of litter cleanup usually falls to local governments or community groups. In Oxford, we are getting serious about our litter problem. We have talked about it for years. We have had good intentions that have produced minimal results. We are putting our money where our mouth is. The truth is you see litter campaigns across the nation this time of year that include a community cleanup day or two and that’s about it. We have been guilty of the same. We are determined to do better.
We started by hiring a full-time Litter Coordinator who picks up litter five days a week. He also oversees volunteer groups and fine workers who must do community service. We hope to be able to commit additional resources to employ others to tackle litter in the near future.
The city of Oxford is excited to introduce a new litter initiative – “Don’t Throw Down on Our Town!” We need the help of our residents to be successful and there are several ways to get involved. Monthly Community Cleanup Days are underway. On March 6th we had a large group of volunteers who picked up 276 bags of trash!