Landfill users in Shuswap disregarding rules, abusing staff - InfoNews

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Landfill users in Shuswap disregarding rules, abusing staff

A line up of cars at the Salmon Arm Landfill. Residents are reminded that due to physical distancing restrictions, wait times will be longer at all CSRD landfills and transfer stations across the region.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / CSRD
April 22, 2020 - 12:30 PM

Landfills and transfer stations are among the few places people can still go, but ignoring the rules and treating workers at these sites like garbage is not on.

According to the Columbia Shuswap Regional District, landfill and transfer station staff report residents deliberately ignoring directions to physical distance, allowing children to run freely through the site, taking time to socialize with others and not following directions about when and where to move vehicles. There has also been a noticeable increase in the amount of rude and abusive behaviour directed at workers on-site.

"We are asking residents to plan ahead for longer waits at all our facilities. If you are in a rush, wait until another time," Ben Van Nostrand, team leader of Environmental Health Services, said in a press release. "The reason these sites can stay open is through the efforts of our essential workers. They are doing their best to deal with the challenges posed by COVID-19. What we need is for people to be patient and be kind."

While garbage disposal has been deemed an essential service, other services like recycling and yard waste disposal are not required operations.

The safety of both workers and the public at regional district waste disposal sites is the top priority. This means physical distancing regulations need to be respected by users. It also means longer wait times to get in-and-out of the sites, especially as many people conduct spring clean-ups.

"If the public continues to ignore our site attendants' messages related to the provincial directions for distancing and treat attendants poorly, we may have to consider reducing non-essential services so we can comply with the COVID-19 regulations," Van Nostrand said.

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