Merton adopts zero tolerance approach to littering

Merton Council is cracking down further on littering and joining forces with specialist environmental crime enforcers from Kingdom Environmental Protection Services.

Cllr Judy Saunders on Mitcham Fair Green with litter enforcement officers.

Cllr Judy Saunders on Mitcham Fair Green with litter enforcement officers.

The council’s own enforcement officers will work alongside the Kingdom enforcement team from the end of April as they go out and about around Merton to make sure the borough is kept litter-free.

This is the latest move in the council’s anti-litter campaign and follows the publication of its anti-litter code and its commitment to working with the vast majority of residents who want to see clean streets and discourage people from littering. The initial focus of the enforcement work will be the borough’s busy town centres.

The council also recently teamed up with Love Clean Streets to allow residents to report litter and fly tipping through the free Love Clean Streets smartphone app. And it has just completed its roll out of the gum and butt bins which should reduce the amount of gum and cigarette butts people drop on the street.

Merton Council cabinet member for environmental cleanliness Councillor Judy Saunders said: “Most of us are fed up with seeing people dropping litter on our streets. Every year we spend £5million cleaning our streets and our street cleansing teams are out around the clock, seven days a week picking up after the minority of people who throw their litter on the pavement. Working with Kingdom, we will be cracking down even more on littering and anyone caught dropping a cigarette butt, a sweet wrapper, or anything that should go into a bin, will be fined £75. It could be the most expensive cigarette or sweet they ever had.”

Dan Goode of anti-litter campaign group Merton Matters said: “We welcome the council’s tough approach to littering. There is no excuse for dropping litter and if we can turn people away from littering and treat it as the stigma it really is, we’ll all see a cleaner borough. Taking these tough measures should really make a difference.”

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Merton Council’s anti-litter code