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Environment Minister Edwin Poots MLA has written to key workers in the waste industry to express his gratitude for their continuing efforts in protecting public health and the environment during Covid-19.

Minister Poots said: “As we navigate our way through the greatest health crisis Northern Ireland has faced for a generation, I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you, our key workers, in the waste industry.

“It is key workers such as yourselves, who are vital to keeping our country going throughout these trying times. To those who have helped maintain kerbside collections, those responsible for municipal cleansing, the people working in our recycling centres, treatment plants, recovery facilities, those maintaining our disposal sites and to everyone working behind the scenes to make sure our waste is dealt with properly – thank you.

“Your continued work through such difficult times, has helped to ensure public health and the environment are protected. Your contribution has been essential to society and the economy – the importance of which should not be understated.”

Minister Poots again repeated his call urging everyone to respect waste industry workers. He added: “The men and women who are providing a vital service to all households deserve respect when carrying out their role. They are working in very difficult circumstances to continue to provide a service for us all.

“I urge everyone to work with our key workers in the waste industry, show them the respect and courtesy they deserve. Please continue to recycle your household waste and adhere to the guidance on washing your hands and disinfecting your wheelie and recycling bin handles before putting out for collection.

“We are all in this together, and by working with and respecting our service providers we can all reduce the risk to everyone.”