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Theme: Informal Economy
Occupational Group(s): Waste Pickers
By Kannan, Shwetha.

Pune-based NGO SWaCH (Solid Waste Collection and Handling) has started a project where they plan to come up with a design for user-friendly pushed carts for ragpickers of the city because the current design is leading to health issues among the ragpickers.

Kagad Kach Patra Kashtakari Panchayat (KKPKP), which is a ragpickers association and also the sister concern of Swach, has been regularly receiving complaints from ragpickers about the carts that are currently being used by them.

India Global study finds waste pickers growing poorer The Times of India . (29 March 2015)

Waste pickers in the city have experienced a drop in earnings because of privatization in the informal waste-picking sector. The finding was part of a global study conducted across ten cities in the world including Pune by Inclusive Cities, an online portal that addresses urban poverty. The study was titled informal economy monitoring study (IEMS).

A study conducted to explore the impact of conditions of service of workers engaged by private solid waste management companies has revealed that janitors were underpaid and exploited.

The research was titled, ”Implications of Private Participation in Solid Waste Management for working conditions and collective organisation in Accra”, and was sponsored by the Institute for Development Studies (IDS) of the University of Cape Coast and undertaken by the Labour and Development Research Cluster of the institute.

Canada Philippines Canada’s Waste Still Rotting in a Philippine Port Inter Press Service . (15 March 2015)
By Mendoza, Diana.

Filipino Catholic priest and activist Reverend Father Robert Reyes, dubbed by media as the “running priest”, joined a protest of environmental and public health activists last week by running along the streets of the Makati Business District, the Philippines’ financial capital, to urge the government to immediately re-export the 50 Canadian containers filled with hazardous wastes that have been in the Port of Manila for 600 days now.

India BBC World Service - Outlook (Nalini Shekhar) BBC World Service . (12 March 2015)

More than half the rubbish in developing countries' cities is dealt with by informal waste pickers. In India they are "untouchables", part of the lowest social group, and largely overlooked by the people they serve. But in Bangalore that is changing. Waste pickers who sign up with 'Hasiru Dala', or Green Force, now have uniforms, ID badges, and access to training. The woman behind the change is Nalini Shekhar. For over 30 years she has been helping India's marginalised communities.


(Nalini's interview is part of a longer broadcast; her interview starts at 17 minutes.)

Ghana Informal sector workers unionize Citi FM Online . (11 March 2015)

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has inaugurated the Union of Informal Workers Association (UNIWA) as its 19th affiliate. UNIWA is Ghana’s first Trade Union for Workers in the informal economy.

India From Barpeta To Lucknow: Journey Of Waste-Pickers Countercurrents . (1 March 2015)
By Dr. Roli Misra and Parvin Sultana, .

"A few institutions like Stree Mukti Sangathan Mumbai, SEWA Ahmedabad, Chintan New Delhi, Bengaluru Mahanagar Palika, Kagad Kach Patra Kashtakari Panchayat Pune tried to formalize and unionize the waste pickers to improve their conditions. However no such initiative has been taken in Lucknow and most other cities."

India Wastepickers demand speedy approval of welfare schemes The Times of India . (24 February 2015)

A group of wastepickers has reminded the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) about the promises it had made eight months back to improve the living conditions of the community.

Waste-pickers associated with the Kagad Kach Patra Kashtakari Panchayat (KKPKP), led by social activist Baba Adhav, held an agitation against the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) for “neglecting” working and living conditions of waste-pickers in the city.

India Rag-pickers in Pune cry foul over lack of space for waste segregation I am in DNA of Pune . (9 February 2015)
By Mehta, Anvi.

After Bavdhan residents protested against the segregation of waste on an amenity space inside their colony, the rag-pickers are now left in the lurch with regard to waste segregation in this area.