UTEC Celebrates More Than 700 Mattresses Recycled in Bedford This Earth Week

Bedford has partnered with UTEC to offer curbside collection of recyclable mattresses and box springs. Schedule collection at: https://utecinc.org/mattress-recycling/. Courtesy Image.

Submitted by UTEC

This Earth Week, UTEC, a local non-profit that offers justice-involved young adults the life-skills to prevent recidivism, is celebrating its mattress recycling program and partnership with the Town of Bedford. The environmentally conscious program has disposed of and recycled more than 700 mattresses in Bedford since the partnership began in February 2022.  

“This Earth Day, UTEC is proud to celebrate our partnership with Bedford, offering mattress recycling to local residents,” said Gregg Croteau, President and CEO of UTEC. “With this partnership, not only is Bedford doing something that benefits the environment and residents, it is providing local young adults with valuable workforce development skills.”

Appointments can be scheduled by visiting: www.utecinc.org/mattress-recycling and selecting the “schedule service” option. 

As Massachusetts recently banned the disposal of mattresses in the trash, UTEC’s program has helped residents safely dispose of and recycle thousands of mattresses across the region. UTEC’s team of young adults manually deconstruct and extract recyclable material from mattresses and box springs, with an average of 85 percent of the mattress being recycled. Young adults participate in deconstruction as well as unloading deliveries of mattresses, and develop valuable warehouse skills.

“The program enables justice-involved youth to gain hands-on industrial and warehousing experience in a safe, structured workplace while gaining an understanding of the environmental impact they are delivering through their work,” said Croteau. “For many of these young adults, our social enterprises are their first opportunity to gain work and life skills in a safe space, and we’ve seen firsthand how impactful that can be for our young people and our communities.”

Social enterprise businesses have been proven to have a direct community impact. They give young adults a clean slate as often as they need it to gain work experience and develop essential job and life skills. What’s more, 79 percent of young adults working in the social enterprise business have obtained and sustained employment outside of UTEC, and it’s been proven that every dollar spent in a social enterprise creates $2.23 in social returns. In addition to the mattress recycling venture, UTEC also operates two additional social enterprise businesses: Madd Love Market’s Woodworking and Madd Love Meals. 

UTEC is one of three organizations selected by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection to be an approved mattress recycler. UTEC currently works with 30 municipalities and has worked with more than 20 schools and hotels, making it the largest mattress recycler in northern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire.

For more information about UTEC’s Mattress Recycling Social Enterprise, visit the website.

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