Bins vital for men’s health

David Wein and Lavan Sritharan from RTS Waste Services promoting the Bins4Blokes campaign. Picture: AARON GOODWIN

By Aaron Goodwin

1.34 million Australian boys and men live with incontinence and a Bundaberg business has jumped on board a campaign, to help those affected live their best lives.

BINS4Blokes is an Australia-wide awareness and advocacy campaign promoting the installation of incontinence bins in male public toilet facilities.

The campaign is an initiative of the non-for-profit Continence Foundation of Australia, Australia’s peak body in promoting bladder and bowel health.

RST Waste Services, a Bundaberg based sanitary bin supplier that services the entire Wide Bay, Rockhampton and Sunshine Coast region has jumped on board the campaign.

The sanitary bin supplier was busy promoting the campaign at its outdoor stall at Agrotrend.

RST Waste Services manager David Wein said that for a number of years, before BINS4BLOKES was recently launched, his business as been working to install sanitary bins in male toilets, every chance they have gotten.

”I do know quite a few people who do have incontinence,” Mr Wein said.

”I could see the benefit of having the campaign for the blokes in the local area.

”When you look at the statistics of boys and men, it’s not just older men, there’s a lot of different causes of it.

”You’d be surprised, if you don’t know anybody that has incontinence, you’ll somebody that knows somebody else who has it.

”It’s not that far way from everyone in the community but blokes being blokes, hide it pretty well and don’t let on that they’ve got it.”

Right now, most people using male public toilet facilities do not have a way to dispose of incontinence products.

This can result in unhygienic disposal and incontinence products ending up in landfill, parks, gardens and oceans.

A lack of incontinence disposal bins also has huge impacts for community and social participation, with men more likely to stay home and not take part in everyday activities.

Men with incontinence are already a vulnerable population, with research showing a clear link between incontinence and depression.

A survey of Australian men with urinary incontinence found that 50 percent avoided situations where they could not access a toilet easily.

Shockingly, some men’s routines included staying home as a precautionary measure, 27 percent.

Every bin installation will help with the stigma around incontinence, and be meaningful to men who are battling health issues related to their bladders and bowels.

The management of Bundaberg Services Club have been providing this service, along with RST Waste Services, for a number of years independently.

”As the figures show from BINS4BLOKES, a lot of people will stay home or not go somewhere because of the stigma of having it,” Mr Wein said.

”Thinking if I leak or anything else, I’ve got nowhere to dispose it and what do I do with dirty pads because I’ve got nowhere to dispose of it.

”By getting on board and getting some notice out there about this campaign, hopefully it will help the guys that have it, to get out and about and enjoy life.

”We also find that in a lot of our business, they’ll say we are all older ladies, we don’t need it.

”Ladies have the same problem, don’t just think a sanitary bin is for younger ladies who need it in that period of life.”

To find out more about the BINS4BLOKES campaign, head to: bins4blokes.org.au/