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City’s New Cleanup Workforce Removes 600,000 Bags of Trash in First Six Months

A City Cleanup Corps worker sweeping the streets (Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

Oct. 15, 2021 By Michael Dorgan

A city clean-up initiative that launched in April has removed 600,000 bags of trash from New York streets, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Thursday.

The City Cleanup Corps, which consists of nearly 10,000 workers, has also hand-swept more than 50,000 city blocks, repainted 900 defaced properties and cleaned 25,000 rain gardens.

De Blasio created the program as a means to employ residents left jobless stemming from the pandemic, while also beautifying neighborhoods throughout the city. The mayor was subject to heavy criticism at the time he launched the program, with many arguing that the city had become unkempt, with unclean parks and dirty streets.

“City Cleanup Corps members are creating a clear, lasting impact that is being felt by New Yorkers and revitalizing the streets, parks, and public spaces that make our city great,” de Blasio said.

The jobs pay $15-an-hour and the city funds the program with money from the federal stimulus.

CCC workers also helped New Yorkers across the five boroughs clear debris from residential properties in the wake of Hurricane Ida, de Blasio said.

Council Member Danny Dromm praised the workers and said they did a thorough job cleaning the neighborhoods of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst, areas he represents.

“Jackson Heights and Elmhurst look a heck of [a] lot better,” Dromm said.

“There is still a lot of work to be done but the work the City Cleanup Corps is doing is vital to the recovery of the city and its communities especially after Hurricane Ida. Now it’s up to us to keep our neighborhoods clean.”

Council Member Peter Koo said the CCC has been in parts of District 20, which he represents, including 40th Road in Flushing. Meanwhile Bishop Mitchell Taylor – the co-founder of the Long Island City-based nonprofit Urban Upbound – said workers have also helped clean the Queensbridge Houses area.

“Neighbors greatly appreciate the efforts of the residents hired to clean and beautify the area,” Taylor said.

State Sen. Joseph Addabbo thanked CCC workers for cleaning the Addabbo Memorial Bridge and the surrounding area. The bridge, which is named after his father, connects Howard Beach to Broad Channel.

“Having the City Cleanup Corps there cleaning the bridge and adjacent areas has been a great improvement for the community,” Addabbo said.

Jobs with the CCC are still available. To learn more about the positions click here.

City Cleanup Corps workers on the job (Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

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