Littering is an individual behavioral problem or a business problem that can become a problem for our community. Changing a societal norm like littering begins with each of us. Each person must accept responsibility for their actions and influence the actions of others around them in their business, home, school and community. By modeling proper trash and waste disposal, you will cause others to consider their actions, too.

Every Person

  • Set an example for others, especially co-workers, friends and children by using receptacles and NOT littering.
  • Carry a litterbag and portable ashtray in your car.
  • If you are a smoker, carry and use a portable or pocket ashtray.


  • Make sure your trashcans have lids that can be securely fastened or use bungee cords to hold them in place.
  • Secure all bags and use twine to secure loose trash for curbside trash collection.
  • Tie paper into bundles before placing into curbside recycling bins.
  • Don’t set out your trash too early… 7pm the night before for residential.

Business Owners

  • Assure easy access to dumpsters by employees and contracts. Check dumpsters daily to see that top and side doors are closed. This prevents scavengers from spreading trash around the ground.
  • Cover all open loads on trucks leaving your business. Encourage vendors and contractors to do the same!
  • Provide ash and trash receptacles at entrances, exits, loading docks, picnic areas as well as in packing lots and along walkways of your business. Remember, these should be placed where the people are!
  • Educate your employees about the importance of individual responsibility for a clean and safe working environment.

Community Leaders

  • Encourage groups to “adopt a spot” in your neighborhood and encourage maintenance on a regular basis.
  • Utilize information from Keep America Beautiful and Keep Philadelphia Beautiful to initiate education programs addressing sustainable community improvement through litter prevention, beautification and waste reduction.

Event Organizers

  • Make your festival, fair or any outdoor community events “waste wise/litter free” by involving all participants in the planning.
  • Give out litterbags and portable or pocket ashtrays at the entrances and make sure everyone knows that your event is a “waste wise/litter free” event.
  • Place large trash receptacles and recycling receptacles near food venues and eating areas. Remember, large event, large number of attendees equal large, well-marked receptacles. If you place event volunteers nearby to help attendees find the receptacles as they need them you will reduce clean-up while educating people about proper waste/recycling disposal.


  • As soon as you light up, identify where you will dispose of your cigarette waste when you finish smoking. Use ash and ash/trash receptacles
  • Carry a pocket ashtray all the time or have a portable ashtray with you as you leave your home, office or car.
  • Encourage fellow smokers to be responsible for their cigarette litter, too.

Pet Owners

  • Pick-up after your dog as you walk through your neighborhood. Use newspaper delivery bags, ‘pooper scoopers’ or other easy to use methods to clean-up after your pet Keeping your pet on a leash assures that it doesn’t foul neighbors’ yards or public spaces in your neighborhood.
  • Be responsible for your pet and its actions.