Morinville mother Jill Ladouceur argues for a cloth diaper rebate program

by Tristan Turner
Morinville News Correspondent

Council received two presentations for potential green initiatives in Morinville at their last Committee of the Whole (COW) meeting June 20. The first was from a company called WastAway who are working with Roseridge Landfill on a potential plant to turn trash into energy.

Another approach to reducing trash in Morinville comes from resident Jill Ladouceur, who hopes Council will offer Morinvillians a $100 rebate per child for adopting cloth diapers. Ladouceur had a thorough presentation for the COW, explaining many of the advantages and clearing up concerns around the alternative to disposable single-use diapers.

Ladouceur claims that the Town can divert 3,800 diapers from their landfills for each child clad in cloth per year. Over the life of a child, that represents many pounds of diverted waste, offering savings to the Town who would have otherwise have to process the trash for the Town.

For families sceptical of the concept, Ladouceur was quick to argue the advantages of using reusable cloth diapers from her perspective as a mother of five children. Disposable diapers cost approximately $1,000 a year for one child, whereas 24 cloth diapers (enough for one child) costs $500 and is reusable over the years between multiple children. Further, she argued that cloth diapers have been shown to reduce the age of successful potty training and reduce rashes. She also added that there are many ways to approach cloth diapering that is completely hygienic, and there are many online supports for parents new to cloth diapers.

Ladouceur also noted that a rebate of $100 could make the prospect even more viable for families, and commented that many of the parents she talked to in the community said they would take advantage of the program if offered.

Council noted that evening that because of the potential savings to waste management in diverting diaper trash, potentially the program could be funded through the Town’s utility budget, if approved.

Mayor Holmes commented on the idea saying that this change could enable the Town to move towards reducing garbage collection to once every other week, as one of the main reasons families stated that they needed monthly collection was for diaper disposal.

Councillor Dafoe put forward a motion to have a broader discussion of the merits of Ladouceur’s proposal at Council’s July 11 meeting, which passed unanimously.

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