Borough Park

Hikind demands daily trash pickups at yeshivas

May 22, 2015 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Trash bags pile up outside a Brooklyn yeshiva. Photo courtesy Assemblyman Dov Hikind’s office
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There are more than 60,000 students currently attending yeshivas in the heavily Jewish communities of Borough Park and Midwood according to Assemblymember Dov Hikind, who said that the figure represents a much larger enrollment than is found in the local public schools.

Public schools receive daily trash collections by the city’s Department of Sanitation (DOS) and yeshivas deserve the same service, Hikind said.

Hikind (D-Borough Park-Midwood) has issued a request to DOS officials to institute daily pickups of trash at the yeshivas in Borough Park and Midwood, similar to what the public schools in those neighborhoods receive.

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“We’re not asking for special treatment. We’re asking for equal treatment,” Hikind said in a statement. Daily collections “will be in everyone’s best interests,” he added.

The trash situation has caused a serious quality of life problem in Borough Park and Midwood, according to Hikind.

“It’s unsanitary and unhealthy to have large quantities of garbage piling up for days. The odor is offensive and the garbage attracts vermin. This is why public schools are extended this courtesy. Given the sheer number of yeshivas in our community and the size of these schools, it’s only fair that the same courtesy be extended to these neighborhood schools,” he said.

Of the nearly 88,000 students who attend yeshivas in Brooklyn, more than 60,000 of them are attending yeshivas in Borough Park and Midwood, Hikind said.

Hikind said he is also working with DOS to resolve other issues, including a traffic situation that takes place during the morning rush hour when sanitation trucks are on local streets at the same time as school bus picking up students.

DOS spokeswoman Kathy Dawkins said the agency would need additional funding in order to increase trash collections at yeshivas.

“In order to accommodate Assemblyman Dov Hikind’s request that more collection services be provided to private schools, additional funding would have to be added to the Department of Sanitation’s budget.  The current city budget does not provide increased funding for such service,” Dawkins told the Brooklyn Eagle in an email.

There are steps private schools can take to mitigate their trash-related problems, according to Dawkins.

“It is important for schools both private and public and institutions to manage their waste effectively either through waste reduction and storage options i.e. compaction, containerization, or expanding recycling efforts,” she wrote in the email.

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