MEMBERS of Parliament from opposing benches have called for action to deal with the ever growing problem of litter and waste disposal.
Both have called for improvements to the current public cleaning services but both have also called for greater community involvement to tackle the problem.
There is a pressing need for an adequate household and business waste policy in Gibraltar, according to Independent MP Lawrence Llamas (pictured) who is calling for an online campaign for the public to post images and videos tom highlight the problem at certain spots around The Rock.
The former GSD shadow minister seems to have a level of support from Environment Minister John Cortes (also pictured) who has called on the public to be proactive and report those responsible for litter and fly tipping to the Environment Department or the Royal Gibraltar Police.
Dr Cortes said there had been an increase in cleaning because some areas were in an unacceptable state, and called on the community to contribute to Gibraltar’s cleanliness by using proper bins and containers, and reporting people who litter and fly tip.
Dr Cortes made his comments at a time when his Ministry is reviewing the requirements of the old cleaning contract which he has described as outdated and one that does not cover enough areas. Dr Cortes has promised that when a new contract is awarded it will make “a tremendous difference to Gibraltar’s tidiness and cleanliness.”
The GGCA Union hit back at claims that the current contract is outdated.
The Union says that its members have been “working tirelessly in pursuit of public hygiene for the last 18 years” but argues that the workforce is now operating with reduced staffing, insufficient equipment and supplies and is only able to provide a service in line with the resources that they are given.
According to the GGCA working hours of all beach cleaners have been drastically reduced, with the number of workers per beach also cut. The effect of this has been that flushing now no longer take place at Eastern Beach or Catalan Bay and the once daily flushing at Camp Bay has been reduced to twice per week.
Trevor Hammond, GSD spokesman for the Environment, said: "It is clear that the public have had enough of the grimy, smelly streets of Gibraltar and the Government must act to address this immediately. While doing so they need to review the way rubbish collection is managed in the town area.
“I am increasingly contacted by people concerned at the eyesore and the potential impact on public health and business of having rubbish strewn across our streets for hours every evening. It is an embarrassment and goodness knows what visitors to our Rock must think.
“I have also tabled a motion in Parliament on this subject so that the concern can be recorded officially, debated and I hope action promoted.
“With the general deterioration of the condition of our streets it is little wonder that our community is appalled and that Government continues to have problems attracting tourists.”