When it comes to recycling in Wayne County, the Department of Public Services knows what they are doing. Just attend one of their collection events and you will see how much work they put into making it easy for their residents to recycle. Wayne County residents are offered household hazardous waste collection events throughout the year. At these events, materials such as paint, batteries, hydraulic fluids, and much more are collected free of charge to all of their residents. This is what makes these events so successful. Household hazardous wastes cost money to get rid of. Because Wayne County is able to make it free, they have people lined up trying to recycle.
“We have it down to a science. We know what we are doing to make these events run smoothly”
What is it that makes these events so successful? They start with the usual methods such as flyers and phone calls in the community, but the one on one outreach that Wayne County does, is what makes their programs shine. This 10% of their budget is extremely important. This is because when they go into a school and start showing teachers, parents, and kids about recycling, people do not understand the market and how recycling is not free. This education is what helps more families realize the resources they have and it gets them to come out to the collection events.
With outreach and education, it is important to remember that recycling does not come first. Reducing and Reusing are even more important and Wayne County tries very hard to show this in their education efforts. For example, one thing they stress to the teachers and students is how reuse can be an art form. Wayne County has even shared videos on how to crochet plastic bags into a blanket and given it to the homeless.
This growth for recycling in our education system will be a focus for Wayne County when they look towards the future.Technology is something they want to keep up on and their smartphone app, Wayne County recycles, that has been launched will help by making recycling more convenient.
The future will hold many new changes for recycling and Wayne County, they are excited to see those changes in Part 115. They know that in order to reach our goal of having a 30% recycling rate in Michigan, everyone must be on the same page, working towards the same rules and requirements. Until then, Wayne County will be practicing what they preach and trying to bridge the gap so people can find what they need to recycle.