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Terrill Haigler announced his run for city council.
Terrill Haigler announced his run for city council. Photo courtesy of Ya Fav Trashman

Viral sensation Ya Fav Trashman running for Philadelphia City Council

The North Philly native has built a following in the last two years through his local activism, and city cleanup efforts.

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North Philadelphia native Terrill Haigler, better known as Ya Fav Trashman, officially announced his run for Philadelphia City Council on Tuesday, Sept. 6. Haigler is looking to win an at-large seat and is running as a Democrat. 

The former city worker is taking a swing at politics with a platform centered around cleanup efforts and beautifying the city in efforts to create a safer place for residents. 

“A cleaner city is a safer city,” he often says. 

Haigler announced his run during a community cleanup in North Philly in the neighborhood he grew up surrounded by family and friends on what was also his 33rd birthday. 

He credits his mother and grandmother for keeping him away from the dangers and risks the streets pose growing up. His newfound fame from social media over the last two years has made him a top candidate for the race. In that time, Haigler has been invited to speak at the White House, and has scored many appearances on national television. 

"People with my background and my perspective need to be represented at the table of decision makers. I feel that the everyday Philadelphians don't have a voice that is being heard when critical decisions are being made for their way of life in this city. My goal is to become the working voice for everyday Philadelphians on City Council,” Haigler said in a press release. 

After settling down, getting married and having three children, Haigler became a sanitation worker for the city in December 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic began in the months shortly after. It was during this time that Haigler noticed he and his fellow workers had little to no personal protective equipment. He even noticed illegal dumping that occured around the city. He began to cover the issue on social media and was able to create awareness and raise money for equipment. 

Throughout the next two years, Haigler grew a following, went on national television, and became a famous name in the city known by his social media handle, Ya Fav Trashman. This was only the beginning for Haigler, who left his city job in February 2021 to start his own hauling company, Ya Fav Hauling. Ya Fav Hauling has been responsible for the cleanup of over 500 tons of trash across the Philadelphia area.


Haigler has been recognized as a “Changemaker” by Waste360 Magazine, and has now also published his first children’s book — I’m Cool Too, which has a goal of trying to raise $1 million for Philadelphia public schools. The next step was to run for city council where he would be able to bring widespread change all over the city on a bigger scale.

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