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Just before the holiday weekend, the city of Toronto and the unions representing striking city workers finally came to terms on an agreement that will see the city's garbage picked up for the first time in nearly seven weeks.
In what almost became a major setback last week, a tentative deal with the city was approved by members of both CUPE Local 79 and Local 416 to get city workers back on the job last Friday.
Earlier today, blue and yellow dump trucks could be seen throughout the city tending to heaping piles of garbage that have been accumulating since the strike began on June 22nd. The end to the strike allows for a literal breath of fresh air for Toronto residents who have been inconvenienced with piling trash for their entire summers thus far.
According to a CBC News report last week, Torontonians will be allowed to put out unlimited trash and recycling for the first two pickups. The report also explains how city citizens can get used to the resumption of the pickup schedule for both garbage and recycling:
“Residents should use their regular collection calendar to determine which material (recycling or waste) will be picked up on the first collection day following the resumption of services. In other words, don't put out garbage if the schedule calls for recycling collection.”
This week will also see the resumption of some very important and highly needed services throughout the city. Daycares, swimming pools and summer camps will all be open for business before the week is over. Temporary dump sites should all be cleaned up by this point as well. Cleaning these sites, however, will prove to be among one of the biggest and most cumbersome tasks.
As CBC News reported: “Geoff Rathbone, who manages solid waste services, said more than 25,000 tons of garbage had been collected at 25 temporary dump sites around the city.”
While reports indicate that some bad blood may still exist between Toronto Mayor David Miller and the unions, the rest of the city can finally breathe a sigh of relief in knowing that Tornonto will find some normalcy again. Known for being a clean city, Toronto has been anything but clean for over a month. Perhaps now, the summer can truly begin.