Blaby is on the brink of bin chaos as over 50 refuse and grounds maintenance workers prepare to strike over pay.
Refuse collectors, working at Blaby District Council are set to down tools over four consecutive Wednesdays (June 28, July 5, July 12 and July 19) in the wake of a dispute on pay with the authority.
The GMB Union, representing the workers, is seeking an additional 15 per cent local pay increase for its members, equating to just under £4,000 per annum, in addition to the national pay offer of £1,925.
Dave Warwick, GMB Organiser, said: “Strike action is always a last resort, but our members are tired of being ignored by council top brass.
“The council has failed to follow up on commitments, failed to offer negotiations and failed to get an offer on the table.
“Our members face the deepest cost of living crisis in a generation; all they are asking for is a pay packet that lets them raise a family and pay the bills.
“Instead of spending taxpayer’s money on expensive solicitors to challenge their workforce, the council should urgently get around the table with an offer before it’s too late.”
According to the union, Blaby District Council has advised staff to use food banks if unable to pay their bills.
A spokesman for the authority said that they had urged the GMB to await the outcome of the national pay negotiations before going ahead with strike action, which begins tomorrow.
Over the next four weeks, it will be rearranging collection schedules across the week to minimise the inconvenience to residents.
Councillor Terry Richardson, Leader of the Council said: “I fully appreciate that this will be an extremely challenging period for us all and I want to reassure our residents that we understand the inconvenience and frustration this may cause. I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to residents for their patience and understanding during this difficult time.
“However, with the strikes spanning over four consecutive weeks, it poses significant operational challenges for us to maintain regular bin collection services for all types of waste.
“We deeply value our residents’ cooperation and support and we will continue to keep them informed about any developments and progress in resolving this situation.”
Visit: https://www.blaby.gov.uk/ for updates.