Hundreds of people showed up at Warwick Mall on Aug. 24 hauling plastic bags of clothes, not to be returned but to be recycled. R.I. Resource Recovery reported that more than 6,000 pounds of clothing was donated in just four hours, and all will be either resold or recycled.
The rules for getting rid of clothing, shoes and textiles have changed and been made easier. As long as textiles are clean, dry and odorless, they are perfect for donation. You don’t even need to separate them from “wearable” clothes. Just put them in a plastic bag and drop them off at a clothing collection bin owned by Big Brothers Big Sisters, Goodwill, Kiducation, Mint Green Planet, Planet Aid, Recycling Associates, Salvation Army and St. Vincent de Paul. The bins are in nearly every city and town in Rhode Island. Look in supermarket parking lots, at elementary schools, near libraries and at transfer stations and recycle centers. And those clothing collection bins on the side of the road? Perfectly fine to use.
Recycling textiles in clothing donation bins will reduce waste buried at the Central Landfill, reduce landfill disposal fees and will give local organizations and businesses the resources they need to increase revenue.
The list of eligible items is long – clothes, coats, socks, underwear, hosiery, pajamas, shoes, sneakers, hats, gloves, towels, blankets, curtains, pillows, sheets, placemats, napkins, costumes, pet beds, fabric remnants, rags – and can be in any condition: ripped, stained, pilled, frayed, moth-eaten, worn, snagged, holey, matted, mismatched, out of style and ugly.
For further details about the companies that accept textiles, bin locations, and rules and facts, go to RItextiles.org or call 942-1430 x109.