The residents’ body in Gurgaon’s Sushant Lok 1 has come up with a unique initiative to help rag pickers and garbage collectors avoid mishaps at work.
Residents United, the residents’ body, will hold an awareness camp on Sunday and more than 200 rag pickers and garbage collectors, mostly in the unorganised sector, will be trained in employing safety first technique while picking waste.
The initiative followed multiple reports of injuries to collectors while sifting through and picking garbage. In most such cases, the rag pickers were not aware of what they were collecting. Often, they end up lifting broken glass pieces or plastic shards that cause injuries. Keen to ensure their safety, the residents have also arranged for a health check-up for waste collectors by senior doctors.
Sushant Lok 1 is one of the most neglected areas when it comes to garbage collection and waste is mostly dumped in vacant plots.
Majority of garbage collectors in Gurgaon are unorganised workers assigned on a contractual basis.
Since they are not part of the organised stream, these workers neither have access to safety equipment nor are they trained in ways to avoid injuries while sifting through waste.
Residents said, earlier, these workers were provided with safety gloves to avoid cuts while lifting a sharp object in a garbage dump. However, most of them said they lost the gloves and boots they were provided with. Residents said the idea was to not only help them avoid mishaps but also make them aware of the need to take good care of the safety gear that they are provided with. They will be given new equipment along with free health check-up.
Neelu Sharma, co-founder of the Residents United, said, “Our objective is to play the role of a facilitator between residents and the government and contribute towards the overall development of our own millennium city. We want everyone to take pride in being Gurgaon residents. The city’s infrastructure and waste management system need an overhaul and with help from the state government and the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG), we should be able to realise our broad goals.”
Jagat Dewan, another member of the residents’ body, said, “I laud this effort by the Residents United to help underprivileged workers. It all started with an incident in which a garbage collector suffered a deep cut on his hand while accidentally lifting a piece of glass. We wish to acknowledge the effort that they put in to make our city clean and give them the necessary safety equipment to avoid injuries.”