Permanent Secretary in the Division of Culture and Sports, Ernesta Drakes handing over the bins to the SSA’s Acting Deputy Manager of Operations, Michael Nicholls, at Jemmotts Lane, St. Michael.??(A. Miller/BGIS)
The Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) today received five garbage receptacles, which its Acting Deputy Manager for Operations, Michael Nicholls, said would greatly assist in "controlling the indiscriminate and illegal dumping in The City".
While accepting the cans from Acting Permanent Secretary in the Division of Culture and Sports, Ernesta Drakes, Mr. Nicholls stated that six years ago the SSA, in association with the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association, placed approximately 350 bins around Barbados, including Bridgetown.
"We have had great challenges in maintaining those bins, to the extent that the ???inners’ [inner pieces] were stolen and it became very costly to keep replacing them… [and] we had to remove the structures from Bridgetown as they were a little…unsightly," he pointed out.
Stating that the cleaning of Bridgetown was not an easy task, he explained that some persons threw their garbage on the streets, while others rummaged through the garbage. "This has been an ongoing problem. I don’t think it will go away right away, but I hope that something could be done to address the issue…
"We need help from some social agencies to deal with these people who make The City their home for whatever reason. I think that is the route we will have to go. The saying is that [even if] you are a vagrant, you have rights like anybody else," he told the Barbados Government Information Service.
Primary and secondary school children in the Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison area were encouraged to participate in the Design a Bin competition, held last October, under the theme This is Our City, Let’s Keep it Clean. It was spearheaded by the Division of Culture and Sports, which has responsibility for managing Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison, and a number of stakeholders, namely the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the SSA, and the Vector Control Unit of the Ministry of Health. The children displayed their creativity by painting their impressions of Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison on the cans.
Mr. Nicholls expressed great satisfaction with the children’s artwork and said he would like to see more schools involved in a similar project.
Ms. Drakes said she hoped that the cans would alleviate the problem of indiscriminate dumping along Swan Street, so all Barbadians could be proud of the area. "We also hope that the artwork created by the students add to the beauty of this World Heritage Property to be enjoyed by locals and tourists alike," she continued.
Director of Cultural Policy and Research in the Division, Sheron Johnson, urged persons not to deface the receptacles, stressing that the children took pride in doing the work.
The bins, which were painted by students of Westbury Infants, St. Paul’s Primary and Greydon Sealy Secondary schools, will be placed in Swan Street tomorrow.