Unleashing Waste-Pickers’ Potential: Supporting Recycling Cooperatives in Santiago de Chile. World Development, Volume 101, January 2018, Pages 293-310.
- Waste-picker performance is affected by the policy environment in which they operate.
- Traditional policies that repress waste-pickers systematically hurt their collection rates, wages, and working conditions.
- Governmental support improves the performance of waste-pickers by increasing their economic, social, and environmental outcomes.
- Inexpensive policy measures working toward a more organized picture of waste-pickers dramatically increase their sustainable performance.
Our empirical results suggest a positive association between the level of government support and waste-pickers’ sustainable performance. Consequently, further positive government intervention, particularly in supporting a stronger structural organization for the waste-picker recycling system, is advocated as the primary policy recommendation of this paper.
SWaCH Across Bharat is a short documentary film that explores the work of the SWaCH Co-operative, (a co-operative of waste pickers in Pune, India).
SWaCH Across Bharat, offers viewers one model of waste management that is not only good for the environment & financially efficient, but also one that safeguards waste-pickers’ rights.
Weaving in reflections of Supriya Bhadakwad (a waste-picker and member of SWaCH Cooperative), Lakshmi Narayan (a founder of SWaCH) and Varsha Chitale (a citizen whose apartment is serviced by SWaCH), the film brings together different perspectives on why the SWaCH model really works.
SWaCH Across Bharat is Directed by Lakshmi Anantnarayan, produced by TERI and supported by the Films Division, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India.
Unpaid and undervalued, how India’s waste pickers fight apathy to keep our cities clean. The News Minute, November 30, 2017.
There are an estimated 1.5 million to 4 million waste pickers in India, who pick up, clean, sort and segregate recyclable waste and sell it further up the value chain.
Shoba Bansode has been working as a waste picker in Pune for over 15 years. She started doing this for a living since nobody would give her work as a domestic worker.
“My son was also very small then, and citing that reason too, nobody would give me work in their households.
At that time, one of my friends taught me waste picking. Using this as my only source of livelihood, I was able to provide for my child and raise him,” she says.
Shoba’s case is not an exception. Waste picking (or rag picking as it is commonly called) is a job that many end up in due to lack of other options.
According to a study published in the International Research Journal of Environment Sciences, titled, Studies on the Solid Waste Collection by Rag Pickers at Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, India, 94% of the 150 waste pickers interviewed in the Jawahar Nagar landfill in Hyderabad, stated that they chose this job since there were no other alternatives available to them.
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Women waste pickers: living conditions, work, and health. Rev. Gaúcha Enferm. vol.37 no.3 Porto Alegre Sept 2016.
Objective – To know the elements of work, health, and living conditions of women who pick recyclable waste and are members of a waste cooperative in a town of the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.
Method – This is a qualitative, exploratory and descriptive study with seven subjects. Data were collected through participative observation, semi structured interview, and a focus group from July to August of 2013. The data were subjected to content analysis.
Results – The following thematic categories emerged: Women’s work, informality and precariousness; Experiences of job satisfaction; and Working conditions and health: experiences with accidents, illness and health services.
Conclusion – It was concluded that the women who collect recyclable material are exposed to precarious work conditions and potential health risks, such as work overload, accidents, illness, and social insecurity, and that nurses are responsible for promoting actions that ensure the health and inclusion of these workers.