“Skip the Stuff” Bill was reintroduced this year in the City Council, as City Council Bill Introduction 0559. Please take a few minutes and send a message to your Council Member asking them to support this legislation!
This legislation is simple, saves restaurants money, and reduces plastic pollution.
The bill had the support of a majority of council members. 1775C received a hearing on December 7, where 22 people spoke in favor of the bill, including Just Salad, a large local chain of restaurants. The NYC Hospitality Alliance, the leading restaurant industry group in NYC, also supported the bill. Nobody spoke in opposition.
After the hearing on the 7th, the bill was passed out of the Consumer Affairs Committee by an 8-1 vote on December 14. The bill was then put on the agenda for a final vote in the full Council on December 15. Around 10PM the night before, word got out that the bill was pulled from the agenda because the Mayor had “concerns”.
The current legislative session has now ended for the NYC Council. To pass the Skip the Stuff bill in 2022, the Reusable NYC coalition will need to find a new primary sponsor (CM Van Bramer has reached the end of his term), and get a majority of council members to once again sponsor the common sense legislation.
Stop the flood of takeout food plastics in NYC!
Council Member Van Bramer’s bill, Int. 1775-2019 B, asks for restaurants, food delivery apps, and online delivery platforms to give out single use plastic utensils, napkins and condiments only when it is requested by the customer. The default is that the customer would receive none of these extra items.
Plastic utensils are one of the most commonly littered items. Plastic litter starts on NYC streets, ends up in storm drains, creeks, rivers, and beaches, and ultimately flows into the ocean. Once in NYC’s waterways it can choke and harm wildlife. Plastic breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, is consumed by wildlife, and eventually threatens human health through tainted seafood and drinking water. Therefore, this bill would eliminate a very large part of our plastic consumption and pollution.
Further, the manufacture of plastics—made of petroleum and other fossil fuels—and their transport, contributes to climate change and pollution. Petroleum and plastic manufacturing infrastructure is overwhelming located in communities of color and poor neighborhoods, unjustly degrading the health of these New Yorkers.
Plastic litter also costs the city and taxpayers money through additional transport and disposal costs.