Sensitive Documents That Need Shredding

Sensitive documents

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First, know what a sensitive document is:

Anything with your social security number, bank or credit card numbers, medical records or forms of ID are sensitive documents. Items with just your name, address and phone number are not sensitive. Magazines, newspapers, and junk mail can be safely recycled whole in your household’s recycling bin or cart. Whole sheets of paper make for higher quality recycling.

Examples of what ARE considered sensitive documents include: tax returns, mortgage applications, bank statements, photocopies of credit cards or drivers' licenses, credit reports, and medical records.

Examples of items that are NOT considered "sensitive documents" (and will NOT be shredded) are: magazines, junk mail, greeting cards, envelopes, newspapers, and telephone books.

Options for handling sensitive documents:

  1. Keep sensitive papers intact, but cut out or black out sensitive numbers before recycling. Recycle these papers in your bin or cart at home.
  2. If your city or town is listed below, click on its name to see paper for shredding for events for its residents.
  3. Attend one of Resource Recovery's free shredding events. Bring up to TWO (2) full green or blue recycling bins (or boxes/bags of similar size - not wheeled carts) of sensitive personal documents per vehicle. Personal documents only – NO BUSINESS DOCUMENTS AT THESE EVENTS, including documents from home-based businesses. No appointment necessary. For a full list of upcoming events and locations visit
  4. Recycle via drop-off at statewide recycling options listed below that are open to all RI residents. Fees may apply. RIRRC does not recommend any one business or organization over another.

City/Town Resident Options:
Statewide Options: