Waste pickers: uniting for their rights

2009-07-02 00:00

WASTE pickers from Pietermaritzburg are joining about 120 of their counterparts from more than 50 waste landfill sites across the country at a meeting in Johannesburg this week.

They will work on strategies to ensure that the government does not take their means of income away from them and criminalise their livelihood of waste picking for recycling.

groundWork, a local environmental justice organisation, has lobbied the government to recognise people who earn a livelihood from collecting waste from landfill sites.

As a result, the new National Environmental Management: Waste Act considers people (salvagers) who earn a living from reclaiming waste from landfill sites, said Bobby Peek, a director of groundWork.

“Most waste pickers are not on site for old food collection but mainly for collecting recyclables such as plastic, paper, cardboard and metals. These recyclables are exchanged for money, making these people entrepreneurs …”


Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.