Rubbish dumped in St Stephen
Rubbish dumped in St Stephen's Gardens

Westminster’s streets are littered with mounds of dumped rubbish from Pimlico to Paddington despite the Council spending £50 million a year with Veolia whose contract has just been extended for another three years.

Labour Councillors say that the time is long overdue for tough action against the regular rubbish dumpers who litter the streets of Westminster and who are currently getting away with this particularly selfish and nasty form of anti-social behaviour.

Labour has put forward a 5-point plan to tackle the rubbish dumping menace:

  • A “zero tolerance” policy of immediate fines for those responsible for rubbish dumping. The current practice of sending “educational letters” to residents and business around dumping “hot-spots” is clearly having little impact. Heavy fines will certainly encourage “behaviour change” and ensure that “the polluter pays”.
  • CCTV cameras should be located at dumping “hot-spots” to catch those responsible. Other local councils do this and have succeeded in catching those responsible and publicising their details in the local media. Again, this will both change behaviour and make the polluters pay.
  • Regular patrols of dumping hot-spots by city inspectors to signal to residents that this issue is a priority for the city council.
  • Closer liaison with landlords and estate agents to ensure that they know that they face heavy fines if they, or their tenants, or their building contractors, dump furniture, household goods, and builders’ rubble on the pavement.
  • Locating planters at known dumping hot-spots to discourage dumping by “beautifying” the area. This worked very successfully at the Ashmore and Shirland roads junction which used to be the worst dumping hot-spot in Westminster and is now clear of rubbish as a result.

Labour has welcomed the Council’s recent steps to introduce food waste recycling but says the recent attempts to ‘nudge’ behaviour change by introducing floral designed rubbish bins has been an expensive failure costing £50,000. The new pink and pastel green bins are overflowing with mounds of rubbish just as much as the regular black bins.

Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Labour City Management spokesperson said:

“The Council spends nearly £1 million a week on waste collection but all that expense and effort is being undermined by the constant dumping of mounds of rubbish on street corners, by trees and lamp posts and at the side of black bins. Residents are rightly concerned that the dumpers are getting away with this appalling behaviour and want to see action by the Council.”

“If the Council wants to change people’s behaviour and ‘make the polluter pay’ then heavy fines will make people think twice before they dump rubbish again”

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