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Cell Phone Recycling FAQ

Q: Why recycle phones?
A: In 2003, Federal Communications Commission mandated Local Number Portability that permits consumers to roll their home phone numbers over to their cell phones, or, switch from one cell phone service to another and maintain their phone numbers.
As the majority of cell phones are not compatible across networks, the FCC ruling created an unprecedented amount of - potentially toxic - used cell phones for recycling as Americans migrated to new service providers.

Since 2004, technology and FCC policy mandates have made many cellular telephones obsolete.  In the last few years, phones without GPS sensors have been retired, as a part of what is called Enhanced 911 (E911) service.  Service providers must soon discontinue older analog service in favor of digital signals.  When these service networks no longer operate, analog phones will cease to work.
Even if the phone itself is no longer useable or functional, many parts and components can be reused or recycled.  This keeps them out of landfills, and prevents hazardous chemicals from polluting soil, water and air.

Q: What happens to the phones?
All of the Telephones collected are being delivered to Charitable Recycling. Many will be donated to shelters for abused adults and children so they may have 911 (emergency only) communications. Some will be provided to medical patients who are awaiting organ transplants. Some will be refurbished and redeployed to areas of the world where there are no land lines or the cost is high. Phones that cannot be refurbished will be recycled and disposed of in an environmentally-responsible manner.

Q: Who benefits?
All proceeds from our collection drive will go to benefit U.N.I.T.E., a partnership between educators in North Carolina and Uganda. Our principal recipient will be the Bigodi Primary School in Uganda, Africa.
Education is vital to assure that people in Uganda can earn a living that will not destroy critical natural environments.

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Q: Which phones are accepted?
As a collecting associate with Charitable Recycling, we accept all unwanted phones - regardless of age or condition.