In 2007 waste pickers in Pune stepped out of garbage containers to establish SWaCH, a workers cooperative to provide front end waste management services to their city. SWaCH enabled their transition from waste pickers to service providers.
Each day waste pickers have to directly handle hundreds of soiled sanitary pads and diapers (baby and adult). SWaCH designed a S.T. disposable bag for the appropriate disposal of soiled sanitary pads. However, there has been an urgent need to look into the appropriate disposal of soiled diapers as well. Responding to this need, SWaCH has designed an identifiable label for the disposal of soiled diapers.
SWaCH — a waste picker-owned cooperative that was responsible for recycling throughout half of Pune, India — has been fighting a battle since it was squeezed out by a private contractor hired by the municipal government.