Every single time I do a beach clean up, I find straws.
Straws were in the top 3 of commonly found items on the beach of the ICC report of 2019. They are used for a hot minute, then binned or thrown on the ground. Since they are so lightweight, they blow around easily, and find their way into drains, rivers, beaches and oceans.
You’ve seen the video. You know that straws can enter animals’ airways. You know they cause immense pain and suffering to animals.
Why do we take the straw, even though we know about the turtle? Because we don’t want to make a fuss? Because we don’t want our lipstick to smudge? This solution is such a no-brainer to me. I really don’t understand when people who are able-bodied use straws. Take a stand and refuse.
𝐏𝐑𝐄𝐏𝐀𝐑𝐀𝐓𝐈𝐎𝐍 & 𝐏𝐋𝐀𝐍𝐍𝐈𝐍𝐆
If you want, you can buy a glass, steel, rice, pasta, or bamboo straw.
Carry it with you (with your cutlery).
Use. Wash. Dry. Pack. And repeat.
𝘖𝘙 𝘺𝘰𝘶 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘶𝘴𝘦 𝘺𝘰𝘶𝘳 𝘭𝘪𝘱𝘴. They are evolved for the purpose of drinking. This is my favourite method.
When you place your order, tell the server at the beginning that you don’t need a straw. It helps to show your own, so that they remember (their packing actions are automated, so it’s VERY hard to break this habit. The whole industry needs re-training.)
You might find that the server will give you a straw, even if you asked for none. Again, automated habits. They probably heard you, but it’s such an ingrained habit that it overrides the customer request.
𝘋𝘰𝘯’𝘵 𝘨𝘪𝘷𝘦 𝘶𝘱.
You can expect success at your favorite place. When you repeatedly make the same request, you will be associated with being an exception to the rule.
𝘋𝘖𝘕’𝘛 S𝘛𝘖𝘗 𝘈𝘚𝘒𝘐𝘕𝘎!
𝗪𝐇𝐀𝐓 𝐈𝐅 𝐘𝐎𝐔𝐑 𝐅𝐀𝐕𝐎𝐔𝐑𝐈𝐓𝐄 𝐏𝐋𝐀𝐂𝐄 𝐔𝐒𝐄𝐒 𝐏𝐋𝐀𝐒𝐓𝐈𝐂?
– Write a letter to the business, requesting that they change to reusable straws, explaining the reasons.
– Bring your own and use that. (Don’t forget to take them back before the table is cleared!)
– Change loyalties to a business who cares.