Rome deals with rubbish crisis

AMA Roma cracks down on absenteeism

Rome's refuse collection agency AMA Roma is clamping down on its widely-documented rates of absenteeism, which the city's mayor Ignazio Marino has described as "unacceptable". The move is part of the capital's efforts to deal with its rubbish crisis.

Not only is AMA firing its most frequently absent employees, it is investigating them for fraud. Out of the company's 8,000 workers, one in four takes advantage of a law allowing them to take three (paid) days off per month to look after a disabled relative, which is higher than the national average. Investigators are now checking to see if the system is being abused.

There is also high absenteeism levels among AMA employees on Fridays and Saturdays, according to a report in Rome daily newspaper Il Messaggero. However, since AMA chief Daniele Fortini began firing employees for taking unjustified time off in recent months, the absenteeism rate has dropped from 16 to 15 per cent.

Meanwhile a new waste-crushing machine arrived at the capital's Rocca Cencia plant on 21 July. The mobile device is being kept as a back-up emergency system, and is capable of treating 200 tons of general waste per day.