Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — The HCM City People’s Committee has approved a project that encourages the recycling of waste, especially plastic waste picked up by private garbage collectors.
The VNĐ3 billion (US$129,000) project, under the sponsorship of the Environmental Development Action in the Third World, is expected to create dynamic markets for plastic waste and encourage private garbage collectors to pick up plastic waste for recycling.
The project will also create networks for private garbage collectors in HCM City and throughout Việt Nam that will promote government regulations on the 3R’s (Reduce-Reuse-Recycle), focusing on plastic recycling.
In addition, it will improve private garbage collectors’ working conditions, reducing health risk factors and raising public awareness about their work.
The project aims to have at least 70 per cent of plastic waste of the 582 tonnes per day of domestic waste collected by 4,000 private garbage collectors for recycling.
When the project ends, 50 private garbage collectors’ organisations will sign public service delegation contracts with local authorities or set up community-based waste pre-collection and recycling systems.
Seventy per cent of targeted private garbage collectors are expected to increase their income from 25 per cent to 40 per cent.
The 50 private garbage collectors’ organisations in HCM City will identify the main factors of risk and reduce the risks of accidents and disease under the project.
At least 50 per cent of targeted private garbage collectors will improve their access to adequate health insurance or services.
According to Việt Nam Television (VTV), the city has 2,800 private garbage collectors and most are not equipped with professional collection tools.
A study among 428 private garbage collectors in the city showed that 75 per cent of them do not have enough money to pay for health and labour accident insurance.
They also are not aware of the procedures to buy insurance for people who do not have a residential book (which shows legal residence in a locality) because 62 per cent of them are from other provinces.
The study was conducted by the Centre for Social Work and Community Development Research & Consultancy in co-operation with the Southern Institute of Social Sciences.
Though most garbage collectors have gloves and other equipment, the risk of bleeding on hands and feet during garbage collection is high, with 94.6 per cent of them experiencing the problem at times.
Many of them also are more vulnerable to skin disease, flu, dengue fever and arthritis. Their average income is VNĐ4.5 million per month. — VNS