Amsterdam keeps streets clean by hiring alcoholics to pick up trash in exchange for beer

Amsterdam furthers its claim as the coolest city in the world by supporting The Rainbow Group, which givie homeless alcoholics beer in exchange for picking up trash. It’s like “Cash for Gold” but way better.



Alcoholics are being paid in beer to clean the streets of Amsterdam as part of a project partly funded by the Dutch government – the organisers think other countries should abandon “old-fashioned political correctness” and adopt the same approach.

I’m sure this isn’t as helpful as tossing a backpack at the problem, but it sounds a lot more fun. Drinkers get to drink, and all they have to do is pick up a little trash? Where do I sign up?

I say that i jest, as I know homelessness and alcoholism is a serious issue, but when all else fails you can either give up on people or try something unconventional. In addition to beer, in quantities unknown, the Rainbow Group provides shelter and food to those in its program.

While not everyone will love the idea of feeding an addiction, apparently everyone in the neighborhood loves it. The area where the homeless congregate has also seen a drop in murders and stabbings, so the program is doing more than just beautifying the streets.

I highly doubt will see anything like this in the U.S. due to the inevitable moral outrage, but I’m glad someone is thinking outside the box.

More details from BBC News.

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