Attention Pittsfield! Tough Stuff Recycling, Habitat for Humanity, and Berkshire Bank are collaborating to help Pittsfield residents have a financially, environmentally, and socially responsible solution to mattress recycling to reduce illegal mattress dumping in and around the communities of Pittsfield.
On September 12, 2023, we are hosting the Xtraordinary Day of Service 2023. Along with mattress recycling, potential services include light landscaping, elevated garden planters, and electronic recycling.
Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, a partner in the event, has been alongside our neighbors to build strength, stability, and self-reliance through affordable homeownership for over 25 years. In addition, they create change by focusing efforts on the gifts, dreams, and concerns of real neighborhood residents. That’s where the Xtraordinary Day of Service comes in.
Around October 2022, the City of Pittsfield City Hall began posting about Massachusetts’ mattress landfill ban. This ban means that mattresses can no longer be dumped or taken as bulk items. Because of this ban, Berkshire Habitat saw an increase in the number of mattresses lying on the curbs, and several mattresses were dumped in Habitat construction dumpsters and properties where workers hadn’t yet broken ground. In addition, many mattresses were being dumped outside the Berkshire ReStore retail outlet during off hours. Habitat was then financially responsible for these illegally dumped mattresses, which takes away from budgets intended for construction materials.
Erin O’Brien of Berkshire Habitat was searching for a solution to this problem, and she found it on the City of Pittsfield Town Hall Facebook page. She found posts from Tough Stuff Recycling, Pittsfield’s mattress recycling vendor. Usually, Tough Stuff Recycling charges $55 to recycle a mattress, a cost many low-income families cannot cover. Additionally, there have been many reports of pre-paid mattress recycling tags being stolen off the curb before pickup happens, leaving the purchaser with a mattress on the street and $55 less in their wallets.
To make mattress recycling more affordable and accessible to Pittsfield residents and ease the burden of illegal mattress dumping on Berkshire Habitat, Tough Stuff Recycling has partnered with Berkshire Habitat and Berkshire Bank for this year’s Xtraordinary Day of Service. Tough Stuff Recycling will accept used mattresses to be recycled for only $5 per mattress or box spring. Rodney Clara, the Vice President of Sales and Business Development of Tough Stuff Recycling, says this event is essential to help support communities and reduce illegal mattress dumping.
“Having been involved in mattress recycling for the last eight years in two different states, I understand the need to have a cost-effective solution for mattress recycling for all residents, businesses, and municipalities across the commonwealth of Massachusetts. Furthermore, if we at Tough Stuff Recycling can be a resource for these entities to reduce illegal dumping, then this is a win-win for everyone, especially the residents of Pittsfield,” he said.
Despite the Massachusetts mattress ban’s load on Berkshire Habitat, Erin O’Brien has found a silver lining.
“For me, I love to recycle wherever possible, and had no idea so much of the mattress is recyclable,” she said. “I found the info in Tough Stuff Recycling’s posts and on their website interesting and encouraging. I wish more people knew about it.”
If you are a member of the Pittsfield community, don’t miss your chance to recycle your mattress for an extremely affordable rate. Please limit two mattresses/box springs per household. Let’s make this year’s Xtraordinary Day of Service the most impactful yet!