When it comes to preserving the appearance of a community, residents tend to keep it a top priority. Clean streets and sidewalks help a city or town put its best foot forward, showing outsiders that the individuals who reside there, as well as elected officials, care about maintaining sanitary conditions. In one UK town, residents are now able to use text messages to notify city officials of any public hazards that are seen.
According to the online publication of This is Derbyshire, the town of Erewash has had a growing problem of dog waste being left on sidewalks. When dog owners take their pets for a walk, more and more of them are not disposing of the remnants after their canines go to the bathroom. Residents can now text in sightings to a hotline – supplying exact details of the location of the mess – so street cleaning teams can respond.
"Residents asked us to provide a text service and we agreed it was a good idea," said Barbara Harrison, a city environmental representative. "There is still the overriding message that has to be made to irresponsible dog owners who fail to clear up after their pets – bag it and bin it. Dog mess is an eyesore and a health hazard. If you are a dog owner, you have a legal duty to clean up every time your dog messes in a public place."
Some cities in the United States have adopted similar methods, allowing individuals to take control of their community through mobile technology. Businesses and organizations can pair with an answering service to stay up to date on this current trend. That way, customers have the freedom to contact a representative 24/7 through text messaging services.