Fuquay-Varina woman wants town to allow pink trash cans
Posted July 31, 2012
Fuquay-Varina, N.C. — You put your trash on the curb and expect your town collectors to pick it up, but a Wake County woman had her home skipped because of the type and color of trash can she uses.
The trash can is pink and wasn't issued by the town of Fuquay-Varina, so the man in charge of trash there says his workers can not collect it.
"It's clearly marked that this trash can fights cancer," said homeowner L'Tonya Meeks.
The fight against breast cancer is an issue close to her heart.
"I have a sorority sister that passed of breast cancer in September of last year," Meeks said.
So, she bought a pink trash can from the Raleigh-based nonprofit 1in9. The group raises money to help those fighting breast cancer.
"I was so proud, on Sunday night, I put my trash can out," she said. "(But) on Monday morning, they did not collect."
She called the town of Fuquay-Varina to ask what happened and they said it was because of the color.
"I said, 'Are you kidding me? Is that the only reason why you didn't collect my trash yesterday?' And he said, 'Yes, because it's pink."
Arthur Mouberry heads the town's Public Works Department.
"The ordinance says we cannot pick them up," Mouberry said. "What she's using, (from) my understanding, may be compatible, but it's not compatible with our ordinance."
That one-line ordinance is simple: "Only containers supplied by the town will be collected by the town."
Mouberry says they don't want workers getting hurt with unapproved bins.
Even though the pink cans are standard size and construction, and the trucks can physically collect them, Mouberry says the town can't budge unless the board decides to offer the 1in9 cans.
"It's not the cause. It's just that she needs to come make a request," Mouberry said. "We need to get a container that's approved by the board."
Meeks now plans to take the issue to the town board.
"Because one in every nine women will be affected by breast cancer, I'd love to see everyone in the neighborhood with one," she said.