No Ifs, Butts or Maybes for Stratford and districts

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Stratford District Council and Keep New Zealand Beautiful have launched a new campaign designed to rid our footpaths, roads and waterways of cigarette butts.   In aiming to eliminate this nasty and prolific litter item, Stratford District Council are asking their community to use the cigarette butt litter receptacles now installed in the Stratford township central business district and surrounding areas of Midhirst, Toko and Whangamomona.

In a joint project, 32 stainless steel cigarette butt litter receptacles have been installed within the central business district and surrounding areas which will encourage  the appropriate disposal of cigarette butts.

"Smokers often contribute to a massive litter problem which severely degrades the look and feel of our beautiful community and environment when they drop or 'flick' their butts without thinking twice" says Tracy Shackleton, Project Manager of Keep New Zealand Beautiful.  "We have bins for litter, and it's dangerous if cigarette butts are disposed with normal litter, so are implementing a simple and effective solution to avert unsightly cigarette butts that are needlessly discarded.  That way, smokers can do their bit to help Keep New Zealand Beautiful as well.

"We hope that smokers will respond positively and dispose of their cigarette butts more responsibly, resulting in a reduction of cigarette butts on our streets and ending up in storm-water drains and the environment" says Tracy Shackleton.

"The only way to overcome this problem is to help people understand that it is a matter of personal responsibility not to litter the streets and allow cigarette butts into our beautiful waterways.  With this initiative there is no longer an excuse that there's nowhere to put them."

Since the changes to the Smokefree laws in 2004, which banned smoking in all indoor areas, cigarette butt litter has become more of a problem for Councils. Cigarette butts are one of the most common rubbish items in New Zealand and often end up in the waterways, entering the food chains of fish, birds and other marine life who mistake them for food.

Vicki Jagersma, Property Asset Manager says "One of the most common complaints received by Council is about the proliferation of cigarette butts on the footpaths and in the gutters particularly on Broadway.  As a Council, we are proud to be working with Keep New Zealand Beautiful on this project and believe that efforts and initiatives like the 'No Ifs, Butts, or Maybes Campaign provides sensible solutions to address these issues."