A still of an animation featuring a sad blue and white anthropomorphic milk carton in a pile of trash.

Where does NYC’s commercial trash go?

Transform Don't Trash NYC is proud to premiere “Where does NYC’s commercial trash go,” a short animated video that looks at how the unregulated commercial waste industry in New York City is endangering workers, destroying the environment and overburdening low-income communities and communities of color with waste. The coalition partnered with the Center for Urban Pedagogy and animator Cole Hannan, along with Teamsters Joint Council 16 members Allan and Plinio and community members from The POINT CDC to produce the video.

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Not At Your Service: A Look at How New York City’s Commercial Waste System is Failing Its Small Businesses

In interviews with more than 500 business owners conducted for this report, one theme became clear: the commercial carting industry needs to change. Despite a major overhaul two decades ago, intended to eradicate the organized crime associated with the industry, standards to ensure that private haulers process waste sustainably, transparently, and at a fair price are greatly lacking.

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Dirty, Wasteful & Unsustainable: The Urgent Need to Reform New York City’s Commercial Waste System

New York City’s sprawling commercial waste system performs significantly worse on recycling and efficiency than previously believed. Under an inefficient and ad-hoc arrangement that developed over the past several decades, hundreds of private hauling companies collect waste from restaurants, stores, offices, and other businesses nightly and truck it to dozens of transfer stations and recycling facilities concentrated in a handful of low-income communities of color. This waste is then transferred to long-haul trucks and hauled to landfills as far away as South Carolina. Previously unpublished studies and new data reveal just how chaotic this system is and make clear that fundamental reform is needed if we are to follow through on the City’s recently adopted commitment to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80% by 2050.

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Worker information: Know your rights

Know Your Rights! According to NYC law, you have the following rights as a worker: The right to payment in accordance with the law. The minimum wage is currently $8.75 in New York and you’re entitled to time and one-half

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Tweets from the Streets