Fly-tipping in Glasgow’s Southside is getting worse with people dumping their rubbish in Govanhill in areas not monitored by CCTV, according to a union chief.
Chris Mitchell, the city’s GMB convenor, claims cleansing workers have seen an increase in fly-tipping post-Christmas – with carpets, furniture and old pieces of clothing dumped along streets including Dixon Avenue.
Mr Mitchell, who believes people are travelling to the fly-tipping hotspots to get rid of their bulk waste, is calling for more education on improving environmental health to take place and for residents to report these issues so the culprit can be caught.
Glasgow City Council says rapid response and neighbourhood teams are available within Govanhill to deal with fly-tipping and the environmental issues that come with it.
Mr Mitchell said: “Fly-tipping is obviously worse after Christmas. The issue improves a couple of months before the festive period when people start using the bulk uplift services properly.
“Now that it’s over, we have started to see an increase in fly-tipping again. Govanhill was just a disaster zone. We believe people are coming from different parts of the city and dumping their rubbish because they know it will get picked up for free.
“They know we are running a rapid response service which circulates in that area 24/7 but there is no enforcement, no deterrent and no cameras.
“I don’t think it is fair for the people who live there and have to endure that. People are trying to do their best and make the area livable but if we don’t act the problem will only get worse in years to come.”
Chris is now calling for educational programmes to take place and for community meetings to talk about the importance of cleansing, the environment and encouraging residents to report these issues.
He says that the problem will only attract more rats into the city which will have an impact on environmental health.
He continued: “I would urge everyone to put a stop to it. I understand that not everyone will be able to afford the bulk uplift charge but if you are intentionally dumping it in that part of the city because it’s free, then I have a problem with that.
“Our members are doing their best to try and keep the streets as clean as possible. Everything is being dumped, from furniture to bags of clothes.
“People who are less fortunate than someone else, start ripping the bags open to see if they can get anything because they are desperate.
“If you start dumping stuff on the streets it will attract vermin and it’s not going to do us any good to have rats roaming around the streets again. We need to have a good look at enforcement and environmental health.
“Every year we campaign for more employment to the cleansing service and every year we face horrendous cuts which are not doing the city any favours.
“We need to think about the future and if we can still provide a good service, the place is an eyesore.”
A council spokesman confirmed that Govanhill receives dedicated services to deal with waste issues in the area.
They said: “A rapid response team is available on a routine basis to remove fly-tipping, a neighbourhood team is in place to deal with both litter and fly-tipping and there are also neighbourhood liaison staff that can address a range of environmental issues.
“Through improved data collection, we are targeting our enforcement action on specific locations in the area where we know fly-tipping is particularly prevalent.
“This effort is supported by the seven CCTV cameras installed in the area and backed by our team of environmental health enforcement officers, which expanded by an additional seven posts during this financial year.
“Fly-tipping incidents have in general been in decline across the city, including Govanhill, although there has been a recent rise linked to the excess waste produced over the festive period.
“Ultimately, fly-tipping is an environmental crime that leaves perpetrators open to enforcement action, including criminal prosecution.
“Every citizen has a responsibility to dispose of their waste in an appropriate manner at all times. Waste left on private property is a matter for the owners to address.”