Assemblyman William Colton and Councilman Mark Treyger launched the first “Speak-Up & Clean-Up” campaign of the season this weekend in Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, Bath Beach — where sanitation issues are a top complaint among residents.
The first clean-up event kicked off on Saturday, with teens from neighborhood schools and community organizations spending the day picking up trash along a large stretch of 86th Street and parts of Bay Parkway. Volunteers also passed out flyers in different languages and spoke to residents and businesses about sanitation rules and guidelines to encourage them to “do their part” and help keep the neighborhood clean.
“An important aspect of this campaign is to inform people and make them more aware of proper trash disposal. For this reason, our volunteers hand out flyers with sanitation rules and guidelines,” said Colton. “During our clean-up events, our volunteers talk to people passing by on the street, as well as our local business owners. We’re encouraging everyone to do their part to help keep our neighborhood clean.”
The campaign, which was launched in August 2011 by Colton and community advocate Priscilla Consolo, has become tremendously popular with neighborhood residents and businesses, as well as with local youth who continue to participate in the clean-up events. Saturday’s event marked the 16th clean-up effort for the campaign since it began. The last “Speak-Up & Clean -Up” effort was held in November 2014, also in partnership with Treyger.
Treyger praised the cumulative impact of the initiative over the years.
“The Speak Up & Clean Up campaign has made tremendous progress over the years towards the goal of a cleaner, greener and more beautiful neighborhood, so I am excited to build on these efforts with the help of dedicated volunteers from our local schools,” said Treyger. “This initiative presents a win-win opportunity by having our commercial corridors cleaned while providing our young people with a valuable opportunity for civic engagement. We are privileged to live in a great neighborhood, and I look forward to rolling up my sleeves once again to help make it even greater!”
The list of volunteers includes: members of District 9 High School Key Club, students from New Utrecht High School, students from Midwood High School’s Key Club, students from Brooklyn Technical High School’s Red Cross Club and Key Club, students from Edward R. Murrow’s Key Club, students from Madison High School’s Key Club, members from Franklin Delano Roosevelt High School’s Key Club, members of Brooklyn Tech High School’s Outreach Club, students from Brooklyn Technical High School’s ACT Club, students from Abraham Lincoln High School’s Key Club, and members from John Dewey High School’s Key Club, among others.
The Department of Sanitation supplied tools, gloves, and trash bags to assist with the clean-up effort. All volunteers received community service hours and enjoyed free refreshments in appreciation of their work.