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Support Waste Workers During The COVID-19 Lockdown

Campaign by Waste Warriors Society

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Story

With the massive negative impact of the Coronavirus and the spread of COVID-19, Waste Warriors is committed to providing support and relief to communities of waste pickers and those in the informal waste sector. These families and their breadwinners will be hit very hard by this crisis and the lockdown. There are countless waste workers for whom staying at home means a fate worse than isolation. It will very soon mean no income, little food, and worsening hygiene. These neglected communities need our support, now more than ever, because staying at home is the hardest of their options. They rely heavily on basic income earned from daily wages or sale of recyclables. But their risk of contracting COVID-19 from waste is also very high.

We are setting up a relief fund to distribute kits for food rations, hygiene, and safety for around 600 waste workers. We are already in positive discussions with many stakeholders and authorities to provide these kits, which will include 1) Dry food rations, 2) Masks, 3) Sanitising items, 4) Soap, and 5) Gloves. We will also provide training on how to properly use these items, a step we've already taken with our own formally employed Green Workers who have been assured paid leave and are now safe at home. We will be working closely with the authorities to ensure the safe distribution of these kits.

Mitigating the spread of COVID-19 amongst these underserved and neglected communities is vital. The food rations will greatly help in this stressful time to feed themselves and their families in this time of little or no income. The hygiene and sanitation kits and basic training on how to use them will ensure that they will be able to use these basic personal protective equipment like masks and gloves when they feel obligated to continue to work to collect recyclables. The sanitizing items will ensure that they are able to keep their hands and feet clean to prevent the spread of the virus after coming into contact with fomites, i.e, infected surfaces. These surfaces can include items which they regularly collect like plastic, cardboard, and metal, as well as the items they have a high chance of touching like improperly disposed of used masks, tissues, wipes, and medical waste.

Organisers
Waste Warriors Society

Waste Warriors Society

Beneficiary Charity

Vishal Kumar

Vishal Kumar

Organiser

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