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Let's Ban Single-Use Plastic Bags in Milton!

Tucker Smith

WHY: see Myths vs.Facts, below Where: Milton Town Meeting [Town Meeting] WHEN: October 22 (and possibly subsequent days) WHAT YOU CAN DO: contact your precinct’s elected MTM members: voice your support of the Warrant Article to BAN SINGLE-USE PLASTIC BAGS IN OUR TOWN A list of MTM members can be found on the Town’s website __________________________________. Call, write, or email your precinct’s representatives first; others as you have time. Myth: Plastic bags aren't really a large litter problem in Milton. FACT: Plastic bags are one of the most commonly found litter items in town, along with cigarette butts, alcohol "nips," and food wrappers. They clog our storm drains, streams, and brooks and catch in trees. Myth: It's OK to use plastic bags because they're recyclable. FACT: Plastic bags are NOT recyclable in single stream recycling and should NOT go in your curbside recycling bin. At recycling facilities, they become caught in processing equipment and force shutdowns, increasing danger to workers andcosting all of us money. Myth: Reusable bags are unsanitary and promote food borne bacteria and illness. FACT: Disposable bags and packaging to wrap meat and fish will still be available under this bag ban. Other safe food handling practices, like washing reusable bags regularly,bagging meat and fish separately from other food, and washing fresh food before eating, can help prevent food borne illness. Myth: Bans on plastic bags hurt the economy or kill jobs. FACT: Few jobs related to the manufacturing of plastic bags exist in Massachusetts. As of August 2018, 81 Massachusetts communities, including Boston, have already banned plastic bags. No business has cited plastic bag or packaging bans as reasons for its closure. Myth: Milton's bag ban would put undue burden on small businesses. FACT: The Milton bag ban, as written, would allow the Town to exempt businesses in cases of hardship. Businesses will be allowed to continue providing free paper checkout bags. Myth: Plastic bags are harmless. FACT: Plastic bags can be lethal; can suffocate humans and harm wildlife, esp. ocean creatures. Autopsies performed on dead sea turtles and whales have revealed plastic bags which lodged in their internal tracts and killed the animal. Ocean-borne plastics remain in the ocean and take thousands of years to break down (or never). Myth: We don't need to ban the bag because the state is looking into it. FACT: The plastic bag ban that the state legislature considered was an addition to a budget bill, and was ultimately left out of the final version of the bill. MILTON MUST PASS ITS OWN LEGISLATION.  YOU CAN HELP! Contact your precinct’s Town Meeting Members and ask them to support the Warrant Article to ban single-use plastic bags in Milton.



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