On September 2nd, a waste picker died in a work-related accident at the Estrutural dumpsite in Brasília. Chico Moura, 57, who worked at the Estrutural dump for 25 years, was buried and then crushed by the machines that cover the waste at the dumpsite.
The Movement of Brazilian Waste Pickers (MNCR) showed once more the result of a national effort in the struggle for recognition with the official partipation of waste pickers in recycling service during the World Cup. Close to 840 waste pickers organized in cooperatives and networks were part of the recycling effort across 12 World Cup stadiums, as well as at official World Cup events.
For women waste pickers, March 8 is a day of struggle – a struggle for inclusive recycling and for the end of inequality in recycling.
The National Movement of Brazilian Waste Pickers – MNCR/RS, strongly denounces statements made by Fernando Mello, the coordinator of the program that will ban the use of horse-drawn carts by the beginning of 2015. “We want to end informal recycling, as well as other informal livelihoods, that many times operate in inhuman conditions, so that they can work formally and in more lucrative and dignified jobs.”
In this video taken at the Waste and Citizenship Festival in France, Roberto Prates Reis, National Movement of Waste Pickers (MNCR), talks about the reality of waste pickers (called “biffins”) in France, and compares them to similar struggles in Brazil.
In the first week of September, 246 waste pickers of the Gericinó dumpsite in Bangú, a peripheral neighborhood in the Rio de Janeiro municipality, were facing the possibility of being suddenly out of work. The workers found out that the city, which has been in the process of closing the dumpsite for many months, was going to hand management over to a private company within two weeks time and that the dumpsite would be off limits.
The National Waste Pickers’ Movement of Brazil (MNCR) participated on July 31st in the launch of the third edition of Cataforte, a federal program whose purpose is to strengthen waste pickers’ organizations. The objective is the restructuring of waste pickers’ networks and associations so that these solidary networks become more capable of performing recycling service for municipalities, as well as to become involved in reverse logistics (producer responsibility) and begin to commercialize their recyclable materials, with the goal of reaching 35 networks.
The government of Barueri plans on burning 97 percent of its waste and recycling only 3 percent, as well as burning waste from nearby cities. The proposal runs against the National Waste Policy, which gives priority to reducing and recycling with social inclusion, as well as federal and UN environmental policies.
This petition — a joint effort of the MNCR (National waste pickers’ movement of Brazil) along with other social movements and groups — supports a bill that would stop to incineration of solid waste in the state Minas Gerais, Brazil. If this bill were approved it would support recycling collection based on solidarity — a system developed and pioneered by the waste pickers.