ASHA workers roped in for better waste segregation

ASHA workers will educate people about sorting waste.

A few months ago, the BBMP was planning to hire a battalion of volunteers to resolve the waste segregation mess in the city. 

Now, the civic body has made a U-turn. It will rope in existing ASHA staff to rein in the garbage segregation fiasco. 

Starting September, the Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) will double up as link workers in all the 198 wards, educating people about segregation besides identifying those who fail to segregate waste. 

According to BBMP officials, deploying link workers to educate people may lead to 100% segregation in the city. 

The link workers begin work at 9:00 am and continue till 4:00 pm. They shall educate people about the ill-effects of not segregating waste and create awareness about the plastic ban and other segregation practices.

The Palike had earlier announced that zone-wise tenders will be called through an agency to deploy link workers in every ward.

“If the Palike hires new link workers, it will drastically affect the lives of the existing ASHA workers who have been serving the city for more than 20 years. Anything that
affects their lives is not
acceptable,” said opposition council member Padmanabha Reddy.

ASHA Workers’ Association state secretary D Nagalakshmi said appointing fresh link workers is not appropriate as it might lead to a tussle between existing link workers and ASHA workers.

“If the link workers are deployed through an agency, they may not be paid salaries regularly. They might be deprived of their provident funds and ESI (Employees’ State Insurance) too,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) will create a cooperative society comprising all the link workers and disperse their salaries directly.

It has been decided that the salary paid to each worker equates to the amount paid to skilled labourers.

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