Lansing tradition makes adjustments for quarantine challenges
by Katie Arvia
LANSING, Ill. (April 11, 2020) – For the past decade, Lansing residents have been participating in an annual Community Clean-Up Day. Enthusiastic volunteers have faced inclement weather, large heaps of trash, and other obstacles that never seemed to deter them. However, this year’s obstacle—the COVID-19 quarantine—presents a unique challenge.
Village Clerk Vivian Payne addressed that challenge at the April 7 meeting of the Village Board. Payne confirmed that Clean-Up Day as a Village-hosted event is being canceled, but the Village will support residents who conduct their own clean-up events while observing safe social distancing. “I would like to encourage all of our residents—if the weather is permitting and it is a nice day—to go individually, either with household family members or by yourself, choose a location in Lansing, and do your own clean-up.”
The Village will provide garbage bags to willing volunteers who call Clerk Payne in advance to arrange for pick-up. Volunteers can leave their filled bags at each location as long as they inform the village ahead of time. Lansing Public Works will pick up the filled bags. Payne also encouraged volunteers to share photos of their clean-up experience: “What we would like folks to do is take a before picture and an after picture if anybody is going out. We will post those on our Facebook page,” she said.
Areas scheduled for clean-up on Saturday, April 18, from 10:00am to noon, included the former Kmart property, railroad crossings, parks, alleyways, and frontage roads—areas that are highly visible to residents as well as visitors. Any of those locations are open for adoption during the Village-supported individual clean-up day. Residents are of course also encouraged to adopt their own neighborhoods and local parking lots for clean-up.
“With all children being off school and home, this year in particular can be of extreme importance because parents can take the kids out to teach and show them what littering does to our community,” Payne said. “If parents have children pick up trash throughout the village, perhaps they will be less likely to litter in the future.”
Those who plan to participate in the unofficial 2020 community clean-up day, should take all necessary safety precautions. Stay at least 6 feet apart from others who may be in the area, use hand sanitizer before and after collecting garbage, wear gloves and face masks if possible, safely dispose of all trash collected, and wash hands thoroughly after clean-up.
By participating in individual clean-ups throughout the village, residents will be able to practice safe social distancing while still making an impact on Lansing.
Before and after photos can be texted to 708-262-8867, so the Village can share them on social media channels.
Questions about helping clean up Lansing can be addressed to Village Clerk Vivian Payne:
- [email protected]