Areas near collection bins turned into dumping grounds in Springfield

The bins are meant for collecting donated clothes and shoes

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Planet Aid tries to clean the messes up within 24 hours of a complaint. The organization cleaned an area near one of their collection bins on St. James Boulevard just Wednesday morning, and by the afternoon, more junk had already accumulated.

From a broken recliner to old Easter eggs, these bins meant to collect clothing and shoes have become dumping grounds in Springfield.

Planet Aid’s Keith Gregory said the organization spends tens of thousands of dollars every month to clean up to 60 tons of trash around their boxes across southern New England.

“It was really like huge, like this is nothing, you seen back there, it’s nothing. They’re dumping all trash. This morning, they pick up the trash, and still,” Springfield business owner Muharren Gunaydin said.

The Salvation Army removed many of their Springfield collection boxes, because they became dumping grounds, and that it’s getting harder to find places that will allow them.

A representative with Planet Aid said dumping like this has become such a problem that they have had to start installing video cameras at some of their boxes to find, and fine, the individuals responsible.

“They might need to find a different way to find a different way to collect the clothes, because nobody can be watching that video camera 24 hours a day,” Jasmine Owens of Springfield said. “I don’t know how they’re going to be able to change that besides taking them out completely.”

A Planet Aid representative said that the organization may install cameras near their St. James Boulevard collection site.