Illegal dumping outside op shops hurting charities – OurAuckland

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Leaving unwanted items outside op shops during lockdown is a costly headache for charities, and it could be a costly mistake for those responsible as well.
In previous lockdowns, piles have grown outside the shops around Auckland, and the problem is starting to pile up again. While some people may think they’re doing the right thing with their unwanted items, it is actually illegal dumping.
People caught illegal dumping, and that includes leaving items outside when the shops are closed, face instant fines of $400 and on successful prosecution, up to $30,000. Auckland Council investigates cases that are reported and issued over 40 fines in the period from July 2019 to June 2020 for dumping outside the stores.
Auckland Council’s General Manager Waste Solutions Parul Sood says a lot of people use lockdown as a time to clean out their homes and garages, but at home is where items need to stay until stores reopen.  “The responsibility for clearing dumping on private land sits with the owner, which is unfortunate for charities as it becomes a cost on them. We work with the organisations to see if we can get evidence to prosecute those responsible and look at ways to deter it in future.”
Ms Sood says council  is still picking up illegal dumping of any kind around Auckland under Alert Level 4.
Councillor Richard Hills, Chair of the Environment and Climate Change Committee, says dumping unwanted items outside charity shops takes money away from those who need it most. “This poor behaviour leaves the clean-up bill up to our charities who prefer to use every last cent to help support vulnerable communities. It is even worse during lockdown as it piles up and makes the job even harder leading to health and safety issues for essential workers and charity shop staff and volunteers.”
Anyone seeing illegal dumping of any kind should call 0800 NO DUMP (0800 663 867) 24/7.
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