Last fall in response to the serious litter problem of nips, small liquor bottles, all around Plymouth roads and the concern that they indicate people drinking while driving, Town Meeting members voted to ban the sale of nips in Plymouth. The liquor store owners gathered signatures to have a special election vote to overturn the Town Meeting vote. On Saturday, Jan. 13, citizens of Plymouth will vote whether the ban approved by Town Meeting stays in place. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

These plastic bottles are too small to be recycled by any recyclers in Eastern Massachusetts, so that is not an option for removing them from the waste stream.

Nips bans measurably reduce litter. Falmouth litter audits demonstrated that within a year, nips went from being the single most prevalent item in the litter stream at 32 percent down to only 6 percent. Every town that has bans reports nip litter has been largely eliminated.

Statistics from Chelsea show evidence that banning nips can impact alcohol abuse. Within a year after their ban was introduced in 2018, protective custodies went down from 222 to 86, ambulance and fire responses were down from 742 to 127 and alcohol related admissions to hospitals decreased.

Bans like this in other towns have been proven to make significant impacts on litter, public intoxication, and alcohol-related harms of all kinds. A yes vote will keep the ban passed by Town meeting in place.

Please support efforts to protect our local environment by voting on January 13.

Geri Williams

Williams is a precinct 8 Town Meeting member.

Early voting on the nip ban question at Town Hall ends Wednesday, Jan. 10. Credit: (Photo by Wes Ennis)
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