BURLINGTON – If you’re planning to dine at a restaurant in Burlington, be prepared to use your hands. Starting next year restaurants will no longer be permitted to provide silverware or other utensils to diners, thanks to a new law passed by Burlington City Council this week.
Citing the success of bans on plastic cutlery in many communities, as well as environmental and economic concerns, the council voted 11-0 in favor of the new law. Councillor Joan Shannon was not present at the vote, but seemed to support the ban in a Facebook post that said “I only eat finger foods anyway.”
Opponents of the law claim that it will eliminate dozens of dishwashing jobs in the city and create a burden for the customers, some of whom might be used to using utensils for eating. These arguments were made at the council meeting, and their feelings were acknowledged, despite the final outcome of the vote.
“We understand that this will be an adjustment,” said council president Kurt Wright, “but people need to understand that metal, and the mining of metal, is almost as disastrous for the planet as plastic. And you mentioned wooden utensils? We’re not big fans of deforestation around here. We need those trees to be trapping carbon, not grabbing carbonara.”
Wright stressed that residents are welcome to bring their own utensils from home if they really can’t live without them. “Sure, if you feel that you truly can’t have dinner without them, bring your own. But we’re all 2-4% neanderthal anyway. This should be no big deal once we’ve gotten used to it.”
According to the law, twigs from nearby woods are acceptable for use, provided they are local, free-range twigs.