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Citizen complaint of the day: The secret mattress graveyard

Multiplying mattresses

Multiplying mattresses

A disgusted citizen files a 311 complaint about the mattress mishegas behind 69 Empire St. in Allston:

Scheduled multiple times, and missed. 5 unit apartment building. It was 4 then 6 now 8 mattresses, all the neighbors placing there. This is less than 6 unit building. Stop looking for excuses not to pick up. You close case as resolved, it is not resolved.



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By this aggressive complaint.

Since when is "do your effing job" with a description of the failures "aggressive"?

The citizen is calling out the Public Works people, or whatever the division of Public Works who handles waste, for not doing their job. If the 311 people are doing their job, this will go to someone in the appropriate agency who will wonder why the people who are supposed to pick up mattresses didn't do this.

Long term, heads will not roll, but someone will be called out on this.

Nothing aggressive about this. The is the *actual* purpose of 311.

Gerard Gorman (person that answered complaint) is a manager in the Waste Management division for City of Boston

If it's really a 5-unit building, the City of Boston indicates they will pick up the mattresses:

That page states "The City of Boston residential mattress program does not service residential buildings with more than six (6) units." Not 6 or more, more than 6. According to Redfin, there are 6 units in that building. Therefore, the City should service it and take care of these mattresses.

...for secret Charles Laquidara reference. :-)

But in the interests of honesty, no, wasn't thinking of the Big Mattress at all, at least not consciously.

I suppose you're going to tell us that Laquidara didn't invent Yiddish?

They just start multiplying and you get this problem on your hands.

Mattresses are like rabbits, they just multiply

when two mattresses love each other very much ...

After the recent state law, I thought most cities stopped picking them up and started telling residents to call a private hauler.

Boston will pick up a big mattress (OK, 'BCN reference there), but you have to make a request first.

Within the first few months of the beginning of the program (a couple of years ago?) , I reported a few mattresses for some property that I manage. Altough the collection could only be scheduled by calling 311, it worked out fine and happened within a week.

The last mattress I reported last September had a 6-week long wait for collection. I recently heard on the radio that the program had been much underfunded and the private contractors doing the collection can't keep up. I also heard that the state passed this (justified) ban to keep mattresses out of the trash with little notice and many cities didn't have enough time or willingness to prepare for it.

Sorry this is why the rollout of this law was silly.

They pushed this thru and didn't think about the logistics of it. So now cities and towns are scrambling to catch up.

Then of course, some citizens are willfully ignorant to the world around them so they don't know to call and schedule a pick up.

Or they don't care.. which is the case half the time. So it just gets dumped somewhere. Mattresses and large amounts of clothes are going to become the next rubber tires and pallets. (items that are often dumped because NO municipality will take them and are a pain to get rid of).

Way to go MA, you thought you were helping, but no, you're just making the situation worse.

I feel sorry for non profits who take clothes because you know they are no overwrought with clothes that they now have to pay to dispose of. because you know thats what people are doing instead of 'calling for a pick up'... just stuffing clothes that should just be tossed into donation bags for 'someone else to deal with'.

It just gets my balls how poorly we manage trash in this nation.. especially after looking how other countries.. that are greener than we are.. do it. We can do it, private enterprise doesn't want us to tho.

This may not be the city's fault, but there doesn't seem to have been much in the way of letting residents know that mattresses are no longer collected along with regular trash. When I see them out near me I report them to 311. One complaint got logged in as "illegal dumping" and the case was closed without the mattress being picked up. Sigh. Some folks just don't know that they have to call for a special pickup.

Considering how many folks pay no attention whatsoever to routine changes in trash collection on holiday weeks, I'm not surprised about this, but you can't blame it on a lack of city outreach. It was in the news, there were giant posters on bus shelters and curbside trash bins, and there were multiple flyers distributed to every mail recipient in the city.

A day or two ago in the evening, I reported a dead rabbit on the road near my house and it wasn't even an hour before they had Bill The Butcher around to clean it up and resolved the ticket.

I was amazed at how fast they responded that day.

Saw one near where I work, flagged it for 311, gone by lunch time.

I’m of two minds about this. On the one hand, databases are good, and it’s worthwhile for the city to know if there is an uptick in the number of pigeons dying. On the other hand, as a taxpayer. I’m not sure how i feel about dispatching a city employee to pick up the bird and throw it away, which anybody with rudimentary knowledge of glove protocol and access to a plastic bag could have done in less than 10 seconds with minimal risk of contamination. (hint: look for someone with a dog; we all carry bags and most of us will happily hand you one. Then look for someone with a stroller, most of whom carry hand sanitizer and will happily give you a squirt.)

I need these for my new musical, Once or Twice Upon a Mattress. Its a political farce set in Russia, roughly based on The Princess and the Pea, only pee.