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The book will officially release in April 2022. Artwork: Deborah Tyson
The book will officially release in April 2022. Artwork: Deborah Tyson

Ya Fav Trashman writes children’s book highlighting the importance of sanitation workers

The book, I’m Cool Too, is set to drop in April 2022 and there’s a Kickstarter goal to sell 30,000 books over the next 40 days.

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In 2020, former Philadelphia sanitation worker Terrill Haigler didn’t like the way the city treated him and other essential employees during the dark days of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As the virus spread throughout the city and its workforce, PPE was low and morale sunk lower as the city scrambled to respond.

It was then that Haigler created his persona, ‘Ya Fav Trashman,’ and the rest is history. 

With the new catchy tag, Haigler quickly raised more than enough money to fund PPE for fellow sanitation workers and then enough to leave his city job and run a nonprofit full time under the same name. 

Now, his days are dedicated to raising awareness and support for city sanitation and organizing cleanups alongside Philadelphia officials. The end goal is to help the city hit its no-litter goal by 2025.

In the Summer of 2020, Billy Penn named Haigler the ‘Most Valuable Philadelphian’ at its inaugural ‘Billies’ Awards for his efforts throughout the pandemic.

Now, Haigler’s outreach looks poised to hit the next level, as he has recently completed a children’s book, called I’m Cool Too, dedicated to showing youth the importance of sanitation workers to society.

The Kickstarter campaign accompanying the book’s launch details how its roots are in conversations Haigler had with his own kids while in his former profession. 

“My kids didn’t want me to pick them up in my stinky sanitation uniform,” reads part of the campaign page. “My son said he wished I was an airplane pilot.”

“Believe it or not, sanitation workers do so much more than just pick up your garbage,” the campaign continues.

The other goal of the book is to change the mindset around littering early in a child’s life. Not only does Haigler call the act of littering a “learned” activity, but he also touched on how not doing it goes a long way in respecting one’s neighborhood and community.

Presales for I’m Cool Too are available now, and the book will officially be available in April 2022.

For the next 35 days, Haigler has a goal of selling 30,000 books to spread the word about its publication.

More details can be found on the book’s Kickstarter page.

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