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Action alert

Eco-Challenge: Refuse plastic straws

 Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet

a metal water bottle and a cotton bag with metal reusable straws sticking out of it are laid out on an unfinished wood background

As part of our commitment to Earth via our Laudato Si’ Action Plan, we are inviting everyone who shares in our charism to take a monthly Eco-Challenge with us.

Say no to plastic straws

Almost automatically, we are often given a plastic straw with any beverage we order from a restaurant. These lightweight plastic tubes are used for a few minutes and then discarded. They cannot be recycled, and often end up littering our streets, greenspaces and waterways.

This month, ask yourself: “How might refusing plastic straws be a step toward improving the environment?”

Begin this Eco-Challenge by learning more about the huge problem with plastic straws. Then take the challenge and choose from our suggested activities or come up with another action of your own.

For more information

Watch STRAWS: The Film from By the Brook Films

The Last Plastic Straw Movement from the Plastic Pollution Coalition

Plastic Straw Pollution Sucks! But Do Bans Work? Your Questions Answered from Green That Life

How to stop using plastic straws by Plastic Free July

Take the Eco-Challenge

For this month’s Eco-Challenge, consider doing some small good things.

  • I will do my best to refuse plastic straws when one is offered to me. (Look for video clips of our sisters, associates and partners in ministry on social media this month for inspiration.)
  • I will do my best to declare “No straw for me please” before one is offered to me.
  • I will encourage one or more friends and family members to refuse plastic straws.
  • I will share this Small Good Thing Eco-Challenge with my faith community.

Spread the word

  • Leave a comment about how you’re taking the challenge below.
  • Invite others to take the March Eco-Challenge by sharing our post on Facebook, Instagram and/or Twitter.

9 thoughts on “Eco-Challenge: Refuse plastic straws”

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    I’ve have a pocket straw that I bring in my purse. If for some reason I don’t have it with me I refuse straws. I’ve been doing this for many years.

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    This is such a small change. I have been doing it for several years. I am still amazed that restaurants still use them. I usually say something to the store’s manager.

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    I will talk to the owners of a family restaurant to ask them not to provide straws unless the customer requests them.

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    My kids are ahead of me on this one, but it helps to discuss this commitment as a family and be on the same page when dining out, etc. We can say, “We don’t need straws at this table. Thank you.”

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    You really have to be quick to say to a server – no straw, please! But I notice that there is a growing awareness and many servers won’t leave straws unless they are asked. That’s a great opportunity to say “thanks” for being eco-friendly!
    Personally, I never use straws. I know that in some situations, like when people stuggle with holding cups, straws are needed. It would be great to use paper but they aren’t easy to find.
    Great video, thanks!

  6. Avatar

    While I don’t usually use a straw, I often forget to SAY “No straw please.” That means it goes to the trash because of sanitation. I will try to be more conscious of telling the server far enough in advance…

  7. Avatar

    Talked to the owner of a local restaurant he is not giving people straws unless they are asking for them. Personally, I do not use and not accepting straws

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About us

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet are a congregation of Catholic sisters. We, and those who share our charism and mission, are motivated in all things by our profound love of God and our dear neighbors. We seek to build communities and bridge divides between people. Since our first sisters gathered in 1650, our members have been called to “do all things of which women are capable.” The first sisters of our congregation arrived in St. Louis, Missouri in 1836, and we now have additional locations in St. Paul, Albany, Los Angeles, Hawaii, Japan and Peru. Today, we commit to respond boldly to injustice and dare to be prophetic.


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