Singapore is often referred to as the ‘Garden City’, a testimony to the presence of lush greenery and our well-organised streets that are typically clean of litter.
However, if we were to look deeper, we will realise that Singapore is not truly clean. It is not difficult to find cigarette butts hiding beneath the bushes, discarded items left next to a full trash bin, or even dirty public toilets.
The question we need to ask ourselves is: Are we a cleaned city or a truly clean one?
We need to recognise that relying on cleaners to clean up after us is not the solution. We need to be inherently clean by binning our trash and always clean up after ourselves.
Littering degrades our living environment. It also attracts pests, which could in turn spread diseases. The Covid-19 pandemic shown us that as a densely populated city, we are especially vulnerable to public health threats.
We cannot afford to drop our guard when it comes to public health issues.
We need to be more mindful of our actions, as well as the public health consequences that comes with it. A piece of litter may seem harmless, but it shows our indifference to the potential public health threats that come with it.
We have to start by cleaning up after ourselves all the time, and binning our trash responsibly. Leaving behind our trash next to a bin even when it is full, is no different from littering. The rightful place for trash is inside the bin.
We can also influence those around us to do their part as well. Whenever we witness littering, we should stand up to the culprits and point out their wrongdoing. Exerting social pressure would make potential litter-bugs think twice about littering.
When more and more of us start speaking up, we can be assured that we are on the right track to becoming a truly clean city.