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Columbus City Council Approves 550K to Continue the Cleaner Columbus Employment Program

Councilmember Emmanuel V. Remy Led Litter Mitigation Job Program

[COLUMBUS, OH] Columbus City Council is passionate about neighborhoods and is committed to a cleaner, healthier City. Last year, the Cleaner Columbus Employment pilot program, designed to reduce litter while providing temporary employment at $15 per hour for homeless and low-income residents, proved to be a resounding success. Yesterday, Councilmember  Emmanuel V Remy announced the continuation of the program into 2021.

"Our focus was twofold. We wanted to support residents and communities hardest hit by the pandemic," said Councilmember Remy. "November 2020, we launched the Cleaner Columbus Employment pilot. I was both thankful and amazed by the results. In less than one month, the program produced 53 percent of the total weight of litter collected in 2019."

COVID-19 continues to have lasting effects on residents living with homelessness, unemployment and underemployment. These effects have also contributed to increased litter, debris and illegal dumping throughout the City. As a result, the need to expand the program was clear. 

"Workers and area residents alike felt the immediate impact of the program, whether it was through compensation or visually cleaner neighborhoods,” continued Remy. “In some cases, they felt both. It became clear that we needed to continue the Cleaner Columbus Employment Program."

The three-week initiative was a complete success. Using $250,000 in CARES funding, the Cleaner Columbus Employment Program produced:

  • Collected 53 percent of the total weight of litter collected in all of 2019  
  • Collected 5,789 bags of litter and debris
  • Collected a total weight of 173,670 lbs 

"Community Development for All People was proud to be a part of the Cleaner Columbus program on the South Side," said Reverend John Edgar, Community Development for All People. "Our neighborhood is cleaner, and our residents received money for their work just in time for the holidays. This initiative is the kind of innovative public-private partnership that can make a real difference in the life of our great City."

"Franklinton Board of Trade's participation with the Cleaner Columbus Program was an incredibly inspiring opportunity to serve the community and help individuals and families," said Trent Smith, Executive Director, Franklinton Board of Trade. "The participants were enthusiastic about addressing litter in their community and truly grateful for the financial support during a time of such struggle and challenge. We look forward to partnering on this initiative again. " 

The expansion of the Cleaner Columbus Employment Program will launch in three cohorts, spring, summer and fall of 2021. 

For more information, please contact Jeffrey Carter at [email protected].