Seasonal workers clean up landfill

Five seasonal landfill workers to be hired on contract

NiCE workers with Ministerial Councilor for Health Roy McTaggart, fifth from left, and NiCE Project Manager Mark Rowlands, second from right, at the landfill on Wednesday.

A team of workers from the National Community Enhancement Project, known as NiCE, is helping to clean up the George Town landfill.

Around 50 workers from the government’s seasonal work program are landscaping and cleaning up areas of the landfill, as well as cleaning buildings on the site, painting, and processing recyclables. The efforts are readying the facility for major upgrades as part of the planned new Integrated Solid Waste Management System, according to a government press release.

Five of the seasonal workers will be hired on contract on a permanent basis in the new year by the Department of Environmental Health, which operates the landfill, officials said. They will work on the expanded recycling program and assist with landfill operation over the next two years, DEH officials said.

NiCE workers process oil at the landfill.
NiCE workers process oil at the landfill.

This is the second year participants in the government-funded pre-Christmas work program have worked at the landfill. Seven participants from last year’s seasonal work initiative are currently being employed by the DEH in temporary positions.

In the work program, which is running this year from Nov. 28 to Dec. 16, government has engaged unemployed Caymanians and permanent residents to carry out cleanup and maintenance work throughout the Cayman Islands. The workers are engaged in gardening and cleaning public parks, beaches and roadsides, as well as making repairs and doing maintenance on government properties.

Last year, about 700 workers took part in the program, at a cost to government of $444,359. This year, almost 600 people registered for the program at the Lions Centre in November.

“We are very pleased to have the [NiCE workers] on board again this year,” said Director of Environmental Health Roydell Carter in the press release. “They make a tremendous contribution to operations at the landfill.”

From left, NiCE Project Manager Mark Rowlands with some of the workers from the 2015 program who are employed as temporary workers by DEH, James Barnes, O’Neal Chambers, Kirk Smith, Karen Ebanks, Anicia Glasgow and Charlotte Bodden, and Ministerial Councilor for Health Roy McTaggart.
From left, NiCE Project Manager Mark Rowlands with some of the workers from the 2015 program who are employed as temporary workers by DEH, James Barnes, O’Neal Chambers, Kirk Smith, Karen Ebanks, Anicia Glasgow and Charlotte Bodden, and Ministerial Councilor for Health Roy McTaggart.

“I am very impressed with the efforts of many of these outstanding workers,” said the department’s NiCE project manager, Mark Rowlands. “They have really helped DEH Solid Waste move forward and raise our standard, while improving the overall capacity to manage and operate Cayman Islands solid waste systems. I wish I could provide jobs for all of these fine workers.”

Ministerial Councilor for Health Roy McTaggart was among a number of officials and members of the media who attended a tour of the landfill where the seasonal staff demonstrated their efforts Wednesday.

Mr. McTaggart said, “This is a very worthwhile program and I am happy to see the workers from the NiCE project contributing in such a positive way at the landfill and dispatch area.

“They take great pride in the work they are doing and their efforts are a valuable contribution towards our long-term goal of implementing a sustainable waste management system.”

The new Integrated Solid Waste Management System, which includes expanded recycling and waste-to-energy components, is in the first stage of the procurement phase.

1
3

2 COMMENTS

  1. Shouldn’t they be wearing protective hazmat suits at all times while on the site? Do they get hazard pay, an additional pay for performing hazardous duty?
    Face mask is not enough. These people might not realize that, but department of Labor must.

    2

    1
    • In the US, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued its Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response Standard to protect workers in hazardous environments and to help them handle hazardous wastes safely and effectively. The standard, therefore, requires each employer to develop and implement a WRITTEN safety and health Program that identifies, evaluates, and controls safety and health hazards and provides emergency response procedures for each hazardous waste site or treatment, storage, and disposal facility.
      An employer MUST take steps to protect the health and safety of these workers in this environment.
      The employer also must INFORM contractors and subcontractors, or their representatives, of any identifiable safety and health hazards or potential fire or explosion hazards BEFORE they enter the work site.
      What rules and regulations govern Hazardous waste operations such as this one in the Cayman Islands?
      Based on the photos, these people are not properly protected (wearing short sleeves and shorts) and probably received zero training.

      3

      0

Comments are closed.