Our Covid-19 Litter Picking Guide

Volunteer safety checklist august 2020

Individuals currently shielding, in ‘at risk’ groups, displaying symptoms (or in contact with those with symptoms) or who have been directly advised to self-isolate, should not litterpick.
Bring your own gloves and Hi-Vis, pickers and hoops where possible. If taking a litter picker home at end of clean up, please sanitize before storing.
Wash hands before and after at home or at nearby w/c facilities where these are available.
Carry hand sanitizer if you have access to some.
Maintain the government recommended social distance from fellow volunteers/members of the public, wear a face mask where this is not possible.
Avoid direct contact with litter at all times – use the litter picking sticks provided and do not touch anything with your hands.
Be aware of your environment and do not put yourself at risk whilst picking litter – this is especially important near roads and drives, rivers and canals.
Rubbish bags should not be compressed using hands or feet as this can accidentally puncture the skin.
Do not pick up any items that cannot easily be identified or where they are clearly hazardous such as asbestos. Report to Group Leader or Manchester City Council if waste-collecting independently of us.
Do not attempt to remove animals or their faeces. If an animal is found please report this to the pick leader.
Any needles or drug paraphernalia needs to be left alone and reported to the Group Leader or Manchester city Council if picking independently from us.
Avoid contact with your own body when carrying plastic sacks.
Do not attempt to pick up any large or potentially heavy items such as gas bottles or canisters. Report these to the Group Leader or Manchester city Council if picking independently from us.
Ensure any cuts or abrasions are cleaned and covered with a waterproof plaster. Report new cuts/abrasions to the Group Leader for treatment
If you get material on your hands, avoid contact with your eyes and mouth, clean with sanitizer as soon as you can.
Clean hands thoroughly before eating food or drinking
Wear sturdy shoes or boots and weather-appropriate clothing, warm in cold weather, sun protection when hot and carry a drink in the summer.
Wear a hi-vis vest, be aware of traffic at all times and stop picking to allow any vehicle to pass.
Stay clear of steep slopes, water, and large areas of mud.
Do not overfill bin bags and avoid lifting heavy objects or sacks alone.
Beware of dogs you do not know – don’t approach them unless the owner confirms it is safe to do so.
Keep away from any wasps & nests.
Do not confront anyone you see littering.
Leave your collected sacks by the designated drop off point.
Take 2-3 spare sacks with you for use.
Pick for (say) 60-90 minutes, then to the meet-up point and return any loaned equipment.


Group Leader safety checklist August 2020

You will need to check that your Local Authority is currently able to collect your cleanups litter sacks, and agree where the drop off points are. Obtain a supply of appropriate sacks to be used.
Directly invite volunteers to clean-ups so that you know exactly who will turn up and to keep numbers within limits set by Government guidance. We are currently “operating” on this being yourself and 5 invitees. 
Check with volunteers ahead of participation, and on the day, that they have NOT
been in contact with someone with Covid in the past week,
been tested positive,
been isolating or shielding,
felt symptoms, temperature, sore throat, short of breath, loss of taste and/or smell in the past week,
been told by Track and Trace to isolate.
Observe social distancing, particularly at the start and end of the event when equipment being handed out/collected and during the safety briefing, which should be held outside.
Advise volunteers to bring face masks for use where social distancing cannot be achieved.
If you provide loan equipment, you will need to provide hand sanitizer/wipes to clean pickers and hoops before and after the event. Volunteers should be requested to bring their own gloves and Hi-Vis equipment to minimise possible contact points.
In good weather, be aware that certain areas could be very busy so you may want to consider the timing of clean-ups e.g. in the evening and avoiding weekend times.
Check for any available WC facilities, and make volunteers aware of what is or is not available.
Be aware of any ‘pinch points’ on your planned route where lots of people may be congregating.
Provide hand sanitising or ask volunteers to bring their own. Ensure volunteers wipe their hands after touching shared surfaces.
“Checking in” – aka signing in, should be carried out by the Group Leader – completing a form themselves rather than sharing pen and paper. These forms are to be sent digitally to the Committee and kept for a period of 21 days, for Track and Trace purposes.
Report any animal carcasses, sharps or heavy items/asbestos to the Local Authority for them to deal with.
First Aid Treatment – please see current advice from St. John Ambulance https://www.sja.org.uk/get-advice/first-aid-advice/covid-19-advice-for-first-aiders/
Share the Volunteer Safety Checklist with Volunteers ahead of the litter pick.


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