With the cooperation of downtown businesses, Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful has placed cigarette butt receptacles along Fourth and Trade streets as part of a new campaign to fight cigarette litter.
The campaign also includes advertisements, free pocket ashtrays, a website, and a public service announcement, says George Stilphen, the executive director of Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful.
"In the past decade, cigarette smoking in America has decreased 28 percent, yet cigarette butts remain the most littered item in the United States and in our city," Stilphen said. "Cigarette butts contain artificial fibers that are not biodegradable and they harbor toxic chemicals. Every cigarette butt thrown on the ground stays there until someone picks it up."
Receptacles for cigarette butts have been placed on Fourth Street at Foothills Brewing, Separk Music, Noma, Mellow Mushroom, Rana Loca, and the Nissen Building; and on Trade Street at The Other Half Gallery, Chelsee's, Sweet Potatoes, the Winston-Salem Urban League, Finnigan's Wake, the Silver Moon Saloon, Elliott's Revue, and the Bubbling Well. Additional locations may be added.
A new website, www.EveryButtHurts.com, has been created to promote the campaign, and drink coasters advertising the site have been distributed to restaurants and bars downtown. Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful is also promoting the campaign with advertisements on a city bus and a sanitation truck. WSTV 13, the city television station, has produced a 30-second public-service announcement to promote the campaign.
In addition, Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful has a supply of sturdy re-useable pocket ashtrays with a metal liner and a sliding cover that snaps shut. The pocket ashtrays are available by calling CityLink at 727-8000.
The campaign is being financed through a $5,000 grant from Keep America Beautiful. The campaign is timely, given the new state law that prohibits smoking in bars and restaurants, Stilphen said. "The new law forces smokers outside, and in many cases there are no receptacles, so the butts end up on the ground."
Every Butt Hurts web site
Waltz of the Flying Butts [PSA video]
Keep Winston-Salem Beautiful web site