Ashtabula becomes a ‘straws on request’ city

ASHTABULA, Ohio — If you want a straw at a restaurant in Ashtabula, you’re going to have to ask for it.

On Monday, the city council voted unanimously to pass a resolution limiting the use of non-recyclable plastic straws and making them available on request.

Camille Licate is the director of “Kids for Positive Change.” She worked with a group of local kids to convince the city council to pass the resolution.

“They have been a catalyst for positive change,” Licate said before the vote.

“They have put Ashtabula on the map through this campaign and allowed our great city to join with other great cities from around the world in a quest to save and protect our environment,” she said.

Licate said the kids now understand that “they have a voice” and can “create positive change” in their community.

“The policy not only curbs plastic straw pollution, but it raises awareness about other environmental concerns and possible solutions,” she said.

Several children who worked on the ordinance also took to the podium to urge council members to pass it.

*Click here and advance to approximately 25:00 to see Licate and several children address the Ashtabula City Council

According to Better Alternatives Now, 500 million plastic straws are used each day in the United States and many of them end up in landfills and the ocean.

Several cities throughout the United States have already banned plastic straws. Many companies — including Starbucks — say they will reduce or eliminate the use of plastic straws.

“Kids for Positive Change” will take part in International Coastal Cleanup Day on Sat., Sept. 15th from 9 a.m. – noon at Walnut Beach in Ashtabula.