Laois County Council will provide litter pickers, bags and gloves to groups, schools and individuals who will be taking part in clean ups in their own localities, during Clean up Laois week which will run from next Monday, April 16) to Friday, April 20.
The environmental officers will work with the community and collect the resulting bags of rubbish.
Portlaoise Town Councillor, Catherine Fitzgerald said the Town Council should encourage the people of Portlaoise to participate in the upcoming week. She put the motion forward at last week’s meeting of the Town Council.
“We need to get the message out there that litter pickers, bags and gloves are available from the council.”
Cllr Fitzgerald suggested getting residents associations to come together to help clean up the main roads around the town.
“We have a lot of active residents associations. We should get the associations together and do the Main Roads, just for that week. They are doing great work in their own estates,” she said.
Cllr Kathleen O’Brien, who is also involved with Portlaoise Tidy Towns, said she encouraged everyone to get involved in Clean up Laois week.
“Even if people just go outside their own gate and pick up any litter they see,” she said.
However, she acknowledged that the approach roads to the town were a problem.
“The residents associations are fantastic in their own estates, it would be great if they could pick a night and do the approach roads.”
Cllr O’Brien said she had seen Cllr Rotimi Adebari and the Ethnic Minority Group, litter picking on the Borris Road and the Stradbally Road, last weekend.
Cllr Adebari said everyone should rally around the Tidy Towns to keep the town litter free. He said the approach roads were vital.
“When people visit a place for the first time, their mind is made up on the approach road.”
Cllr Adebari said they had collected 17 full bags of rubbish on Saturday.
“That’s the way it is on all the approach roads. We will be out every month,” he said, encouraging his fellow councillors to join the next time if they were free.”
Cllr Adebari also drew attention to dog fouling on the roads.
“When you drive by you don’t realise how bad it is, but you would struggle to put your feet down on clean ground.”
He said the council needed to do more and suggested providing bins for people who do pick up after their dogs.
“Some people have a bag with them and collect their dog’s poo, but they walk a few metres ahead and then drop it.”
Cllr Adebari said the council needed to be more proactive.