Last month I wrote about how speaking up can make a difference. “What could and should I advocate for?” you may ask. Let me offer some ideas:
☆ Have you ever let the manager of a local store know that the entryway is littered, full of cigarette butts, in need of attention? I have. At one of the larger grocery stores in town my comments always get an immediate response. The other large grocery store hasn’t been so responsive. The sad thing though is that I have done this numerous times. So while my comments are getting a response that day, there’s no permanent solution to the problem. Granted, the stores themselves generally are not the ones littering, except possibly staff who go outside for a cigarette break. If the litter and cigarette butts are allowed to accumulate, that trash will attract more litter. Also, businesses can invest in cigarette butt disposal apparatus and place them for maximum effectiveness. One area restaurant has one of these things, but it’s positioned in such a way that patrons don’t readily see it, and hence throw their butts on the ground in front of the door. I did say something to them, but to no avail (at least so far).
☆ Make a comment to a business manager/owner suggesting they use containers other than those made out of Styrofoam.
☆ Speak up for less packaging. There’s a nearby store that sells wonderful liquid soaps , but they are in relatively small plastic containers. Even though I recycle them, I inquired if the soap came in larger quantities and was told no. My next step is to write a letter to company headquarters suggesting such an option for consumers.
☆ Advocate for a recycling project at your child’s school. I have learned recently that some area schools will be doing this soon, but how great it would be if all the schools in Eastern Madera County had a program by which they could make money for special events or something to enhance the school along with teaching children the importance and value of recycling. Projects could be sponsored by the PTA, a school club, or staff with a special interest.
☆ How about calling or writing to CalTrans to complain about the trash and weeds on local state highways? There’s been a number of letters to the editor in the Fresno Bee about the condition of Highway 41 through their city (which many of us travel also), but the highway and on- and off-ramps continue to be an eyesore. Are the people with the authority to do something about it being reached? Of course, saying something once or being the only person speaking up may not do the trick. Think about joining forces with others and be persistent.
What advocacy ideas do you have for a cleaner and greener earth? Send your ideas to Rosie Recycler at email@example.com. The first person to write in will be awarded a Keep Our Mountains Beautiful t-shirt.
Bass Lake clean-up
The next clean-up along Bass Lake Road (222) is planned for 1 p.m., Sept. 18. Meet at the old Mountain House restaurant parking lot. Grabbers, bags, and gloves will be provided. Volunteers will be entered in a drawing for prizes. Details: Sandee Scott, (559) 760-1058, or firstname.lastname@example.org.