Monday, December 10, 2012

Amazon vouchers to stop litter at Nairn Academy and other Highland Schools - MSP John Finnie speaks out

Would vouchers to local businesses be better than Amazon vouchers as an incentive to stop littering at schools?
The Highland Council website recently stated: 
"A new project led by The Highland Council to prevent littering around 10 secondary schools in the Highlands is set to take place thanks to funding awarded by Zero Waste Scotland, the Scottish Government-backed body set up to help Scotland reduce waste, recycle more, and use resources sustainably.
Volunteers from schools, parent councils, local community groups, local businesses and Highland Council staff will be brought together to encourage pupils to use litter bins and recycling bins over the lunch time period in return for Incentives. The volunteers will hand out vouchers to pupils each time they use a litter or recycling bin.
Vouchers returned to school by the pupils will be counted and also entered into a prize draw to win £10 Amazon vouchers." You can see the full press release here. 

MSP John Finnie isn't impressed, he blieves that since Highland Council has a policy to support local business then vouchers should thus be issued for the like. Here's what his office has to say today:
Highland MSP, John Finnie, is today welcoming assurances from the leader of Highland Council that the authority will rethink the way it uses public cash to help local businesses.

It comes as Mr Finnie wrote to Councillor Drew Hendry questioning the use of Amazon vouchers as an incentive to school pupils to pick up litter. Instead Mr Finnie suggested to Councillor Hendry that vouchers for local businesses in the Highlands should be given to those taking part in the scheme as a way of boosting the local economy and encouraging young people to use their local shops.

Commenting on the assurance from Councillor Hendry that he will look at how the authority uses incentives and how Highland Council can patronage local businesses, Mr Finnie said;
“The assurance from Councillor Hendry is to be welcomed as local businesses in the Highlands deserve every bit of support the Highland Council can give it, however small.
“To distribute vouchers for an anonymous on-line, tax avoiding firm that squeezes firms on our doorstep is a mistake and I hope that the council will go one stage further and withdraw them from this excellent environmental initiative.
“I look forward to hearing from Councillor Hendry on what future steps the Highland Council will take to make sure this does not happen again.” 


Bitter Lout said...

Could I have a £10 voucher for posting on here please?

no morals said...

Why stop with Amazon? Lets get behind the companies that avoid paying taxes and offer vouchers from the likes of Starbucks, Vodafone, Apple, Google, Facebook etc as well

Anonymous said...

Maybe if the kids parents actually raised them with some respect for the town and the environment it would not be a problem.

AuldSkater said...

Not really sure this is the best solution, what happens when there's no incentive to use the bins? Back to chucking litter on the ground.

Quit wasting money on futile gestures.

Graisg said...

The Courier reports this morning that the Highland Council are no longer using Amazon Vouchers and are looking for a local voucher provider.

Our society said...

I'm disappointed to learn that our young people might not receive Amazon vouchers

Clearly what it being taught to them here in our schools is that there is money to be made out of everything.

When I was a youngster this education was not in place and we freely placed litter in the bins, the only reward was that our school and streets looked tidier.

On rare occasions that litter became a problem at our school we were made to pick it up in our lunch time break, this was before the concept of the minimum wages.

But to reward our young people with Amazon vouchers is such a good idea in terms of teaching them the values they should hold. Make lots of money, hire a very good firm of accountants, and keep most of that money for yourself rather than pay it in taxes. So simple yet it works for many people in this country.

We're already seeing it happen in the rest of the UK but lets dismantle the likes of the NHS and then we won't need to pursue so many people for this awful concept of tax.

Surely a very unfair society is what we want, isn't it? I can only think if you don't you might have to make it a yes vote in 2014!

By then young people will have spent all their vouchers and everywhere will be awash with litter, but think of the education they will have gained through this heartening experience. I can only heap praise on those who thought of it, well done, treat yourselves to a Starbucks coffee or two

Anonymous said...

Did Mr Denholm when he was Rector at the Academy not have a system which required all pupils, on a rota basis, to be involved in clearing up their concourses at the end of the morning interval and at lunchtime? Was it not torpedoed by a parent objecting to the council about his little darling being required to undertake such a collective civic duty?