Audio by artist mary_loritz

Homeless persons may soon staff recycling business in down- town Columbus

1:23 minutes (1.27 MB)


Some homeless and formerly homeless people may soon have jobs recycling materials that come from offices, bars, restaurants and other businesses in down-town Columbus.

“ We are trying to start businesses that will employ homeless people, because traditional employers don't want to hire somebody who's got a lack of employment experience or has a criminal background. So, we want to create those jobs ourselves.”

That was Mary Loritz, who works with the Columbus Coalition for the Homeless. She said there is a demand for this type of work in downtown Columbus. .

“A lot of them don't have recycling service and so we'll hire the homeless and formerly homeless to pick it up and take it to recycling centers.” Leadership Columbus is providing help with market research, incorporation, and business insurance.

“Hopefully it will be on the ground in a couple of months.”

She said she would like the recycling business to become a worker-owned co-op at some point in the future, but not just yet.

“To begin with, we'll be a regular business, but I think down the line, we'll want to have a more cooperative ownership and management structure where the homeless are actually in control and democratically managing the company themselves.”

Tom Over for WCRS Columbus