Your Garbage, their Living

Mark David P. Galvez / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
This gallant service for the community calls for due respect given to our garbage collectors. GT2/Mai Vireak

The stink actually sticks to our clothes. It’s rubbish. Everywhere. These are wastes. No one dares to care because its garbage. Flies and maggots are already in it, so why should people take time to pick it up again?

It is ludicrous to see how much waste is generated everyday. Garbage bins are easily filled. The average resident produces seven and-a-half pounds of garbage daily. Due to increasing consumption of goods and material, waste production is also rising. For this reason, it’s a mounting problem for us as to where to dispose of garbage. And our solution most of the time? Throw asunder. What’s worse, we let our garbage pile up in the streets.

The environment is continuously being poisoned because waste piled up will block canals leading to flooding. What leads to it? Simple. We don’t like the smell and we don’t want to carry garbage so we can’t even dispose of it properly. We become lazy because we see it as a dirty thing and no one likes to get dirty.

Who would actually think that this useless waste can help make a living for some people? That there is a certain breed of people willing to smell and face this stomach-churning garbage?

Hidden benefits to the waste? Well, garbage also provides jobs for the garbage collectors. A big thank you should be given to them because they make life easier and more comfortable for us. These are the people who face the gross and dirty job of going from house to house, dumping buckets of mouldy chicken, rotten banana peel, diapers, napkins, tissue, fermented rice into the back of a big truck early in the day. This is the tough breed who live on a heap of trash; who will carry out the scum of the earth just to earn a living and provide for their families.

Garbage collectors are often looked down upon in our society because it’s a “cruddy job,” when in fact they help us and our environment more than we give them credit for. Garbage collectors should be seen as hard working, selfless and zealous. Garbage collectors are just like us; they have hobbies and interests, they have families and they need to make a living, and they should be shown a high regard for this.

We may think of garbage collecting as an expeditious and an easy task. In reality, garbage men do a lot more work than we really think; their job requires them to protect the environment, lift heavy waste, and do outdoor work that requires a lot of physical effort so they need maximum strength. They toil with the hot sun beating down, the stench compounded and rivulets of sweat streaming down.

Relentlessly, they do the tiresome job everyday, but the compensation is never enough. The labour and effort is not equal to the amount of money they get out of collecting trash. They receive earn low salaries which is way too small for someone who is keeping our land and environment clean as they can. Salute to them.

Garbage collectors mean more than society thinks. They are not “just garbage collectors” but they are heroes, if we may say that. They do a variety of tasks that help the environment, even if it causes them harm. They save our environment and that what makes them heroes.

Heroes don’t always wear capes, you know. So, instead of belittling them, we should commend them for their diligence and zealousness just to earn a living to get by. We should be very grateful as we lead busy lives.

So the least we can do is make their job easier by keeping our garbage in proper bins and show them a little appreciation now and then.

Respect for our garbage collectors. Next time you see one, a simple ‘thank you’ is all it takes for them to carry our worldly waste on their shoulders like Atlas.

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