Ealing Incentive Scheme Criticised As “Expensive Marketing Campaign”

03-04-14(2)picThe Greenredeem recycling incentive scheme that was launched in Ealing this week has come under fire from Opposition Spokesman on Environment, who says that scheme is nothing but an expensive marketing campaign using taxpayers’ funds”.

According to Ealing Today, Cllr Phil Taylor, said: “It is quite outrageous that Labour is running such a large advertising campaign so near to a local election.

“This sum is something like ten times the amount that a political party in Ealing is allowed to spend on its entire local election campaign.”

It was also suggested that the scheme could even lead to some residents being out of pocket. Residents that don’t have access to a computer will have to use a phone, costing 5p per minute, which Cllr Taylor claimed more than the value of points earned.

“I wish it were an April’s Fool joke that Labour was playing on residents; but it’s not,” Cllr Taylor continued. “Labour’s bespoke Greenredeem Scheme is nothing but an expensive marketing campaign using taxpayers’ funds.

Cllr Phil Taylor – “I wish it were an April’s Fool joke that Labour was playing on residents; but it’s not… Labour’s bespoke Greenredeem Scheme is nothing but an expensive marketing campaign using taxpayers’ funds”

“The Scheme is not linked to actual participation and is instead linked to residents making weekly pledges, taking quizzes or referring friends. Who has the time to do this? If you claim by phone you need to be quick or the call will cost more than the points are worth!

“If Labour was really serious about encouraging people to recycle more, they would scrap the £40 garden tax and get the waste and recycling service to actually work. Then maybe the joke would stop being on residents.”

The Greenredeem programme was introduced into Ealing this week, following a Whitehall backed grant of £1.13m from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and is designed to support the council’s efforts to boost recycling rates across the borough.

Households across Ealing will be able to earn on average £70 in valuable rewards each year. As well as redeeming points for personal discounts and offers at more than 100 local and national retail outlets, including the likes of Marks & Spencer, Cineworld and Red Letter Days, residents will be able to donate their points to local community projects.

Ealing Response

In response to the councillors comments, Ealing Council pointed out that there are several ways to register for membership, record weekly recycling and redeem points, such as a going online or using the free app.

An Ealing Council spokesperson said: “Residents can access the free rewards scheme in a number of ways such as online or by using a free Greenredeem app for their smartphone. If they prefer they can call Greenredeem’s UK call centre to register, record their weekly recycling activity and find out what discounts and offers they may wish to claim.

“For those choosing to record their recycling each week by telephone, the cost of a one minute call is 5p from a BT landline or £2.60 per year. On average, we expect residents to benefit from rewards from national and local partners worth around £70 per year, so for those people not able to access the internet, or a smartphone app, the benefits will significantly outweigh the small cost.”

Members who aren’t online can phone to redeem their points but it’s unlikely that they would call to redeem a reward worth 3p as has been suggested by some, the council said.

Local Ealing businesses already signed-up to the scheme include Toni & Guy in Ealing, Tranquility, Harris and Hoole in Ealing, London Bike Hub and Gurnell and Northolt Leisure Centres.

National partners include Marks & Spencer, Cineworld, Red Letter Days and Cycle Surgery.

 

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