Dirty business: The hidden workers who deal with waste in Vietnam’s capital

By Hoang Phuong, Duc Hoang   April 18, 2018 | 09:00 pm GMT+7

Workers collect, classify and recycle all kinds of waste just to earn a little bit extra.

Minh has lived in Hanoi for ten years, but still doesn’t speak fluent Vietnamese.

He comes from an ethnic minority group based in the north of the country, but moved down to the capital to earn a living as a waste disposal worker in a residential building.

Minh does not get the chance to practice his Vietnamese very much because concrete walls separate him from the rest of society, and the only connection he has with other people is a waste pipe.

Minh does not know exactly how old his two sons are. All he knows is that they quit school early to follow him in the waste business.

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Minhs wife and older son clean up the bunker of garbage under a residential building in Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Do Manh Cuong

Minh’s wife and older son clean up the bunker of garbage under a residential building in Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Do Manh Cuong