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It’s one of those vexing issues that we all have to deal with at some time – where to take old mattresses? Up till now many have ended up as landfill but that’s all set to change!

Keeping bulky items out of landfill, reducing illegal dumping and supporting people into the workforce – it’s a win on all fronts with a new mattress collection and recycling service that’s now available locally.

In a first for the Willoughby City Council area, residents can have their old mattresses collected and recycled for free, just by booking online. And there’s a feel-good factor to booking because the initiative is done in partnership with social enterprise Soft Landing who create jobs and training for people who have experienced barriers to gaining lasting employment.

The new service is in line with Council’s commitment to sustainability and with the aim of diverting large bulky items from landfill. Mayor Gail Giles-Gidney said introducing the service was an obvious choice.

“We’ve heard from the community who say they want a greener and cleaner place to live and that they want Council to be a leader in sustainability, so this directly delivers on our community’s expectations,” Mayor Giles-Gidney said. “Many residents don’t know what to do with large bulky items and leave them on the footpath, however, we want to encourage residents to make the most of recycling, repairing, re-using bulky items and this new service is one way to do that,” she said.

No more mattress dumping by the side of the road!

Amazingly, Soft Landing recycles up to 75% of mattress components. The steel springs are used in roof sheeting; the foam is recycled into carpet underlay; the husk is reused in weed matting and mulch; the timber is processed for mulch and animal bedding, while the fabric is used in acoustic panelling.

Salvaging these materials diverts thousands of tonnes of waste from landfill annually. Not only are there the environmental benefits, but social and economic ones as well. The scheme provides valuable employment and training for people who find it hard to secure employment

“Providing access to sustainable employment and training improves economic wellbeing, better social, physical and mental health and many other benefits,” Mayor Giles-Gidney said. “It’s an initiative Council and the community can really get behind and support.”

The program complements other Council sustainability initiatives, including the Live Well program – a series of over 50 workshops and talks each year to help people live more sustainably.

To book a mattress collection, visit: https://www.softlanding.com.au/willoughby

To read more about Soft Landing, their employees and the recycling process visit: www.softlandingcom.au