First of all, thanks to a keen eyed New Barnet resident who tipped me off to this one. She pointed out that Barnet are using a company called Enventure to recruit 24 "enthusiastic individuals" to help promote recycling. Staff will be paid between £8.55 and £9.55 per hour plus a possible bonus and will be employed 35 hours a week for 9 weeks. You can read the job description here.This coincides with the introduction of the new blue recycling bins.
Now I am going to shock some readers - I think this is a good idea. I am sure that people respond much more when someone explains to them why they should do something and how it will benefit the entire community. I have long held the view, and expressed it repeatedly, that local community advocates can add real value, helping to engage with the community and to provide a cheery face to often dull or complex issues. What is such a shame is that the council have waited until they have spent £3.7 million on new bins to implement what they should have done three years ago when they brought in the blue box scheme. Perhaps if they have used this direct engagement model then, they wouldn't have needed to spend the £3.7 million.
Anyway, I hope Barnet monitor this project carefully and, if it is successful, use community advocates more widely.