The Columbia Shuswap Regional District (CSRD) says their landfill staff are being treated like garbage, and they’re not going to tolerate it any longer.
CSRD landfills and transfer stations remain open through the COVID-19 pandemic, but physical distancing regulations are being enforced, in some cases leading to longer line-ups.
“While the CSRD understands this can be frustrating, users cannot be allowed to disregard these critical safety measures,” a statement from the regional district reads.
Landfill and transfer station employees report that some landfill users are ignoring physical distancing directions. There have been reports of children running freely through the landfill sites as users stop to socialize and do not follow directions about when and where to move their vehicles.
The regional district also reports people have been directing rude and abusive behaviour towards CSRD staff at the landfills.
“We are asking residents to plan ahead for longer waits at all our facilities. If you are in a rush, wait until another time,” said Ben Van Nostrand, CSRD team leader of environmental health services.
“The reason these sites can stay open is through the efforts of our essential workers. They are doing their best to deal with the challenges posed by COVID-19. What we need is for people to be patient and be kind.”
Garbage disposal has been considered an essential service, but the regional district noted other services which are still being offered at the landfills like recycling and yard waste disposal are not required.
Van Nostrand said if the public continues to ignore directions from site attendants, or treat the attendants poorly, the non-essential services could be reduced.