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Public sweeping at open areas, ground levels of housing estates paused as part of annual cleanliness campaign

Public sweeping at open areas, ground levels of housing estates paused as part of annual cleanliness campaign

File photo of a HDB void deck in Yishun.

SINGAPORE: Public sweeping at open areas and on the ground levels of housing estates will not be carried out from 6am to midnight on Sunday (Apr 25) as part of the annual Keep Clean, Singapore! campaign.

All 17 town councils are taking part. 

The campaign kicked off on Sunday with the "SG Clean Day" initiative, which aims to show "how much litter there is and what it will be like if there was no one to sweep it all away", said the Public Hygiene Council (PHC). 

"Residents will then be encouraged to volunteer picking up litter around their neighbourhoods, in small groups of eight," said the agency in a media release. 

It added that it is in talks with the town councils to step up "SG Clean Days" to once every quarter in 2021 and eventually, once every month by 2022. 

PHC will revive several outreach efforts that were paused due to COVID-19 restrictions, such as Buddy Clean workshops to encourage students to take personal responsibility by cleaning up after themselves in public. 

Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment giving a speech at the kick-off of the Keep Clean, Singapore! campaign. (Photo: Public Hygiene Council)

It will also take over the SG Clean Quality Mark certification of premises under the National Environment Agency (NEA), and will continue the certification and re-certification of NEA premises in 2021. 

Other activities planned include BlockWalk, the largest neighbourhood clean-up event on May 29 ahead of World Environment Day. 

In partnership with Habitat for Humanity Singapore, PHC aims to rally 300 to 1000 volunteers with their stakeholders and partners to support and join the event. 

During the event, volunteers will be spread out across Singapore to pick up litter in neighbourhoods and community spaces such as void decks, playgrounds and parks. All volunteers will also connect over Zoom to meet other like-minded "environmental advocates". 

Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu launched the campaign. She said working towards a "zero-litter nation" is not just the responsibility of the cleaners, the Government or organisations like PHC. 

"I urge everyone in Singapore to keep our beloved public spaces, such as our neighbourhoods, hawker centres and parks, clean.

"We can do this simply by disposing our litter properly, returning our trays after meals, flushing the toilets properly after use, and encouraging our families and friends to do the same," said Ms Fu. 

Source: CNA/lk

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