09 April 2020


During the Covid-19 pandemic we can all take steps to relieve the pressure on key services and key workers, including those involved in collecting and disposing of our household waste.


Please bear the following in mind:

  • Keep recycling and keep putting the right waste in the right place;  
  • Clean the handles of your bins with disinfectant before and after you leave them out;
  • Always wash your hands for 20 seconds before and after touching bins;
  • Put tissues, plus cloths, wipes and gloves used for cleaning, in the general waste bin only. This will help protect those who sort our waste;
  • Avoid doing large clean-outs for the time being as this puts additional pressure on services; and
  • Always keep at least 2m away from those collecting your waste.

It’s also really important to not illegally fly-tip waste because of the dangers it poses to human and animal health. Please don’t leave your waste outside closed recycling centres, charity shops or beside street bins. If you see someone fly-tipping, you should report it to the local council.

If your household is self-isolating, follow these steps:

  • Put personal waste (such as used tissues) and disposable cleaning cloths into disposable rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag and tied securely;
  • Keep personal waste separate from other waste; and
  • Set this waste aside for at least 72 hours before putting it in your usual external household waste bin.

The Environment Minister, Edwin Poots, has said “we must do all we can not to intensify the burden on our public health services. By recycling correctly, putting your waste in the right bin and not dumping unwanted waste we can all play our part - it’s that simple.”

By taking “easy, sensible and practical steps”, the Minister confirmed that “we will stop any additional risks to public health and support our waste sector workers who are already under increasing pressure.”

If you have specific questions about your household waste, please contact your local council directly. You can find their details here:

We're all in this together.