City of Gadsden conducts ‘clean-up day’

Two people pick up trash in a forest background in Gadsden.

Photo: City of Gadsden employees pick up litter alongside Gadsden streets and in neighborhoods on ‘clean-up day’ April 14. (Michael Rodgers, City of Gadsden)

Nearly 200 City of Gadsden employees fanned out across the city to clean up litter on April 14. After spending several hours working at 30 different sites, the workers were able to remove 11,280 pounds (5.64 tons) of trash and debris.

“This is another example of what can be accomplished in Gadsden when everyone is working together,” said Mayor Craig Ford. “I got tired of seeing trash in our city, so we decided to do something about it. We asked every city employee who could join us today to get out of our offices, roll up our sleeves and physically pick up this trash. We had recreation managers, police officers, engineers, secretaries, council members, building inspectors and more out here taking pride in the city we serve every day.

“I hope it inspires residents and visitors to take the same pride. We need them.”

The city provided each participating employee with a Clean-Up Day 2023 T-shirt sponsored by Goodwyn Mills Cawood. After spending the morning along roadways, in cul-de-sacs, in ravines and even in the water, workers were provided lunch at The Venue, which was sponsored by the Mayor’s Office.

Organizers asked participants to sign up in advance, and they were randomly divided into seven teams — one per city council district. The purpose of this was to get city employees from various departments to work on projects together, many of whom do not regularly work with one another. The idea was to help foster unity and develop better working relationships throughout the city’s workforce.

Ford said he intends to make this city employee clean-up day an annual event, much like a “serve day” offered by many corporations. In addition to cleaning up these areas, the city has doubled its penalties for littering and is buckling down on enforcement of dumping laws.

“I know a clean city is what every resident and business owner wants,” Ford said. “And that’s what they are going to get — so long as I have anything to say about it!”

Submitted by City of Gadsden Public Affairs Coordinator Michael Rodgers.

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