October 28, 2004

York Region and local businesses clean up litter

NEWMARKET – The Regional Municipality of York offices across the Region today joined a number of local businesses, including Canadian Tire, IBM, Magna International and Tim Horton’s in one of several litter clean-up events planned as part of the Region’s recently launched Litter Prevention Strategy.
“Litter is a growing problem in York Region and the Greater Toronto Area,” said Regional Chair and CEO Bill Fisch.  “If we are to stop the proliferation of trash on our roadways, parks and schools, we have to deal with the existing situation and work at changing people’s behaviours towards littering over the long-term.”
The Litter Prevention Strategy has two key elements: an educational campaign to change littering behaviours, and a number of community clean-up days to deal with existing litter.  Today’s event marked the third community clean-up event since the Litter Prevention Strategy launch at Mazo de la Roche Public School in Newmarket on October 18th.  The other two events included:
• On October 21st, over 5,200 students from 50 elementary schools in York Region participated in a clean-up of their schools. 
• On October 23rd, over 340 volunteers from 17 community groups participated in a three-hour clean-up of their neighbourhoods.
“Public clean-up events like this are important to help galvanize a community into tackling the issue of litter in their neighbourhoods,” said Georgina Regional Councillor Danny Wheeler, Chair of the Region’s Solid Waste Management Committee.  “Removing the existing litter will form the first part of our strategy, with an overall goal of litter prevention through public education.”
The Litter Prevention Strategy will focus on changing attitudes towards littering through a combination of public messages, advertising and further litter clean-up days.  York Region will also be working with other GTA municipalities to help deal with the issue of littering commuters.
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, the services we offer and links to our nine area municipalities, please visit our Web site at: www.york.ca

Contact:   Michael Kemp, Corporate Communications, York Region
- (905) 830-4444 or 1-877-464-9675, ext. 1232
- Email: michael.kemp@york.ca

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