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Citizen complaint of the day: An elastic situation that's out of hand on Beacon Street

A concerned citizen files a 311 complaint about Postal Service rubber bands strewn all over Beacon Street:

Is there any way the city could get the USPS to stop tossing their elastic bands everywhere and maybe re-use them instead? The sidewalks of Beacon Street in Back Bay are absolutely littered in elastics today, about half a dozen in front of every single building. Not only does it make the neighborhood look bad, but it's dangerous for pets and wildlife who may eat them and get them tangled up in their insides.

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Not only does it make the neighborhood look bad, but it's dangerous for pets and wildlife who may eat them and get them tangled up in their insides.

Christ, at least be honest. Animals rarely, if ever, eat rubber bands*.

Also, is it really that hard to pick up some bands yourself? Normally, I’m so in favor of 311, but this stinks of the worst kind of shitprivilege.

*I work at a leading non-profit shelter/Vet in the city.

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Here's a reason, https://www.sciencealert.com/thousands-of-rubber-bands-have-turned-up-on...

Those rubber bands on the street get washed into the storm drains then the Harbor or Charles River and are very persistent in the environment. Also, a quick google turned up LOTS of cases of pets ingesting them too. I think the 311 reporter was asking the City to work with letter carriers to stop the practice, not pick up the bands, pretty common sense. To call this "white priviledge" seems like a "stretch".

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could ingest a rubber band within seconds of seeing it. Luckily he grew out of this, but it was a nuisance at minimum. I never noticed how many were around until walking with a 12-week old+ pup.

There have been other complaints about this on neighborhood FB groups. Not sure why the mail carriers just throw the bands on the ground instead of putting them in their pockets.

I pick them up when I see them, but really, should anyone have to do this every day? Take them off of the mail and stick them in the mail bag.

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I would pick it up and also have no problem reporting it if it was repeated behavior (not that there’s anything 311 can really do here). Litter is a problem in Boston. If it’s a privilege or entitlement issue then it’s clearly on the shoulders of the twirp who feels entitled to use our sidewalk as their garbage can. This is coming from a guy walking around Dorchester with a handful of single-serve booze bottles at 6am every morning that I inevitably encounter walking my dog. That always raises some eyebrows! That said I choose to assume the best - that it’s a simple accident - whenever possible. Better for your health and may actually be the right explanation!

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Pea shooter and spitballs from a cracked-open window.

Or maybe a note or a short word with the letter carrier making a gentle request?

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How do you know the race of the person who filed that complaint?

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To those who like to shout “white privilege” at every situation; it may make you feel better and you are perfectly within your rights to do so, but it won’t help you rally many white people to your cause.

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Between sensible working class folk and people who were born with a silver spoon in their mouth like the complainer. No one wants to be associated with that

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You're saying only white people give a shit how their neighborhood looks? That's pretty racist.

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Let me know which non-profit shelter/vet so I know which one should be avoided.

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I pick up and pocket every one our mail carrier drops. We haven't had to buy any rubber bands in years. Winnage.

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I usually like to refrain from these potentially inflammatory conversations but I am one of those people who actively engages in keeping my community clean because many of my neighbors are too lazy to do so. I like a clean, cared-for environment. I pick up and dispose of the letter carriers’ rubber bands, discarded plastic water bottles, paper coffee cups outside my building, food delivery people’s receipts, pony tail holders that fell onto the elevator floor, unwanted mail left on the mailroom table instead of being put into the nearby recycling bin, etc.

It’s not so much about “white privilege,” but about common courtesy, sense of personal pride, good manners, feeling part of a larger community, seeing beyond yourself.

I don’t know why the US Postal Service allows letter carriers to drop elastic bands wherever they fall, but until a solution to end this behavior is found we can all pick up a few. It takes a matter of seconds.

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..of the carriers littering is complaining to the US Post Office. If they don't get complaints, they won't take action to stop their carriers from littering. The City of Boston and the surrounding towns would have a lot of weight behind their complaints so kudos to citizens letting their mayors, councillors, etc know we expect them to follow up on this littering.

Citizens can still clean up in the meantime, but the bottom line is people, including letter carriers needs to pick up after themselves. And if they don't, they should face consequences.

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Mail carriers are rubber droppers.

But yes, I would think reports to the post office where the carrier has the route that they are LITTERING (an illegal act) as they do their job would result in at least a reprimand.
Whether that would change anything about such lazy behavior, I don't know.

Is it me or are people in general not as conscientious about their work these days?

I mean really... you want to be known in the neighborhood as the USPS slob?
I say wait and take phone video and bring it to the P.O. manager.
People need to be called on their bullshit.

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You’re living in a city dude. Ever been to New York?

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A lot of things are great about NYC, but street cleanliness definitely isn't one of them.

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I live in a neighborhood where I've never seen a rubber band from the postal carrier on the street. So clearly it can't be that difficult not to litter. When I happen to open the door when my carrier arrives, I see him just slip the band off the letters so it drops in his pouch. He can even smile while doing it.

IOW, definitely worth complaining to the Post Office.

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Stretches to year 'round requirements, maybe?

Shovel and spread sand/salt in winter. Sweep in warmer months.

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