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Charity Bins Becoming Rubbish Dumps

By fabforty - 31 January 2010 34

This morning after a long overdue clean up of my spare room, I made a visit to the tip (or whatever it is now known as). I duly paid $10 to dump about three boxes of rubbish from the boot of my small car.

I then drove on to the Woolies carpark in Gungahlin to put a load of clothes into the Smith Family Bins and what I saw there absolutely appalled me. The area in front of these clothing bins, about five or six carspaces worth, was knee deep in garbage. None of this stuff could be of any possible use to charities. I am talking about broken plastic laundry baskets, stained mattresses, smashed tables and general household garbage.

I can only assume the people responsible for turning this area into their own rubbish tip have a good reason for it. Can they not afford tip fees ?

I would like to find out who is responsible for cleaning up this mess and hope it isn’t the charities. I think, financially, this would send them backwards rapidly.

I would also like to put it to my fellow RA associates if anyone has any ideas on how this illegal dumping can be stopped. Lowering tip fees might help. How about the Government put some large skips in designated places for people to dump stuff in ?

I don’t know. What does everyone else think ?

What’s Your opinion?

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34 Responses to
Charity Bins Becoming Rubbish Dumps
fgzk 8:55 am 01 Feb 10

dvaey “If a member of the public removes anything from outside a bin, they can be charged with theft.”

I’m not sure that is right. As far as I know if its not in the bin its fair game to be scavenged.

bd84 2:05 am 01 Feb 10

Most charities do have security cameras outside these days, but it’s not hard to disguise yourself dumping stuff. There are dumping laws that were strengthened a few years ago, but like most things are never policed, I’d recommend shooting the offenders. It’s probably time they got rid of all bins and stopped allowing donations outside business hours. Perhaps only having shops in locations where people cannot dump things, charity of some large shopping centre owners would help there.

dvaey 11:52 pm 31 Jan 10

One other interesting side note here, is that if someone does dump ‘illegally’ near a charity bin, no-one wants it.

The charities say they only take what is INSIDE the bin.
The government wont pay for cleanup of the area around the bin.
If a member of the public removes anything from outside a bin, they can be charged with theft.

Maybe what we need is some sort of government-supported business to collect this useful stuff and re-sell it like, say, revolve.

On the flip side, the last few times Ive been into a salvos or vinnies op-shop, Ive noticed the items for sale are often either very poor condition, or priced almost the same as new similar items. Many years ago, you used to be able to buy 10 items of clothing for 10 bucks, these days 5 items wont leave you much change out of a $50.

cleo 10:48 pm 31 Jan 10



sepi 8:39 pm 31 Jan 10

I think Jon Stanhope should live up to his election promise to provide Hard Rubbish collection once a year to Canberrans, by 2010.

There was an article in yesterday’s paper about it. He blames the Greens for the delay. (Only because the Greens stopped Labor getting full government, not because he actually has proposed a plan and they blocked it or anything.) He has no plan at all for actually doing hard rubbish as yet.

Some people don’t even have cars, let alone afford tip fees. In a way piling it outside charity bins is better than just dumping it into the middle of the road, or a bustop or nature reserve.

Felix the Cat 8:27 pm 31 Jan 10

Remove the charity bins from shopping centres and only have people donate directly to the shops during business hours.

Maybe more “transfer stations” are needed, similar to the one at Mitchell but without the tip face bit, just have skip bins and you pay $10 or whatever to an attendent to dump your household rubbish. You would need to keep transfer stations in industrial areas like Fyshwick, Hume and Mitchell, be a bit of an eyesore and probably on the nose to have them in the suburbs.

Council pickups once a month or so like they do in Sydney could be another solution or more Second Hand Sundays.

There was an article in The Canberra Times that said the charities and revolve are getting hundreds of old still working cathode ray televisions donated to them as people update to flat screen plasmas and LCDs and they can’t sell them so now give them away to pensioners and I think unemployed.

TheDJPea 7:32 pm 31 Jan 10

I noticed that this morning too, and ranted at my gf until I realised I was too hungover too continue. I haven’t got much to say on the subject other than I have little faith in the human race at the best of times. I’m not surprised it’s happened, it’s happened before at other bins, will happen again.

Thumper 7:11 pm 31 Jan 10

sadly, the charities have to pay to clean this up.

How to stop it, well, no idea, there’s to many people out there without the smallest piece of shame or social conscience.

hetzjagd1 5:46 pm 31 Jan 10

Maybe we need to setup what Melbourne has and let everone leave their broken or old crap out on their lawn for pickup periodically. It would be worth investigating the relative cost of a service like this compaired to a smaller service dedicated to just checking out the charity bins for this sort of dumping. Then again basic video surveillance near these bins might be the most cost effective measure if it were then possible to record the license plate of people who are doing this and then issue fines to the owner of the car; assuming they aren’t just wheeling piles of this sort of stuff up in shopping trolleys.

belray 5:22 pm 31 Jan 10

I agree. I saw the appalling display of pure laziness and was disgusted. What is the matter with some people??? The end result will be that the council will remove the bins, then the charities lose out.

A great outcome just beacuse some lazy a$$hole can’t be stuffed driving to the tip.

AussieRodney 5:11 pm 31 Jan 10

Personally, I think it’s plain bloody lazy.

Unfortunately, it’s you & me that fund the clean-up. The charities are legally obliged to take only what is in the bin.

Putting skips out there is a great idea, but it’s only going to encourage even more laziness.

grunge_hippy 4:57 pm 31 Jan 10

scurge of the earth these people. i too just went to the shops and there dumped outside the bins was a old, broken, and thoroughly useless BBQ. it happens every weekend. there is no room to put your genuine donations.

Its better to go and take your donations straight to the charity shop.

MrPC 3:50 pm 31 Jan 10

I’m pretty sure it is the charities that have to pay. It’s the price they have to pay for keeping those collection bins in place, which do occasionally get them saleable merchandise.

Similar dumping occurs at the door of or out the back of pretty much every charity store every weekend.

Canberra needs to adopt a twice yearly kerbside hard waste collection. Pretty much everywhere else in the country manages it, and while their charity stores still have to deal with dumping, it doesn’t seem quite as bad elsewhere.

moneypenny2612 3:11 pm 31 Jan 10

This is not a local problem – it is a nationwide one.

Apparently the Salvos spend nearly several million dollars per year on clearing up rubbish dumped at their charity bins or charity shops around the country. You can probably multiply that a couple of times over for the total costs for charities having to dispose of other people’s “charity”. Say, $5 million per year spent on rubbish removal instead of charitable assistance? Not good.

I don’t know that waiving tip fees will help much though – I imagine a lot of people can’t be bothered driving out to the tips when there is a ‘bin’ conveniently at their local shopping centre. But some people might go to the tip if dumping were free.

Maybe a few hard waste collection days would help also – for those things that can’t even be Freecycled.

Does the ACT have illegal dumping laws that covers misuse of charity bins? If so, are there inspectors or rangers who can issue on-the-spot fines?

… I’d be interested to know whether TAMS does much to enforce whatever laws there might be about this sort of thing. While I recall TAMS putting city rangers on the case of cigarette butt littering, I don’t recall similar attention on littering / dumping at charity bins and stores.

I-filed 2:43 pm 31 Jan 10

An electronics company should sponsor webcams at the bins … get great kudos from the public that way … I would support any business that helped there …

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