Brighton Begins Two Week Bin Strike  

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Disputes over changes to working schedules among other issues has caused rubbish truck drives to begin a two-week strike.

Changes in the duties carried out and the removal of long serving drivers from their traditional routes has seen the workers walk out, with the GMB union announcing that 100% of members involved in the ballot process had voted in favour of taking this strike action.

The last time a strike took place in the city was 2013, when issues then resulted in a backlog of bin bags that littered right across the streets.

At that time, workers were forced to take action because unions made claims regarding a looming pay cut of up to £4000 per year.

GMB announced that the action was necessary due to the consistent number of one-sided driver removals, changing workers duties, changing the crew and altering the collections of dropped work had become a real issue at the city’s Hollingdean base that was now having a significant effect on driver health, safety and overall well-being.

In response, Brighton and Hove City Council noted that they had been made aware of the strike action beginning on Wednesday 6th October, however still felt hopeful that the dispute could be resolved without the need for strike action.

The explanation given indicated that due to needs and demands, the council needed to make crew changes, or be able to move staff members between routes in order to provide the best service.

Much emphasis was placed on the need to prioritise services in areas where rubbish had been building up due to staff shortages, vehicle breakdowns and general speed of service which has been unavoidable at the current time.

A number of extensive proposals to remedy the situation and find an amicable solution have been presented to the GMB in the hopes that the drivers will accept and agree to a new working solution.

Photo Credit: Jon Tyson

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