Adur & Worthing bin strike to go ahead as GMB members vote unanimously for industrial action
There is still time for management and councillors to consider the good, the bad and the ugly consequences of action, and make an improved offer, says GMB
GMB, the union for refuse and recycling workers, have announced that their members in Adur & Worthing have voted resoundingly for strike action.
The members, who work as refuse, streets and recycling operatives and drivers are demanding an uplift in all grades, in addition to increases in allowance rates for overtime and shift patterns, plus a review of operating and management practices.
The result of the ballot was that 100% of votes cast were in favour of strike action, with 97.7% in favour of action short of a strike, off a turnout of 89.8%.
49 members were balloted, but many more have since joined and will be eligible to go on strike once notice has been submitted.
Mark Turner, GMB Branch Secretary said: “The mandate from our members couldn’t be much clearer after this ballot. We remain prepared to talk to the council, but at the same time be absolutely ready to fight if doors remain closed to us.
“I have to say I’m a little shocked that both Catherine Howe (Chief Executive) and Paul Brewer (Director for Digital, Sustainability & Resources) seem unaware that GMB will always take robust action on behalf of members if employers won’t engage with us to discuss our members’ concerns.
“There will be a period of time while we look to issue notices for action and I might suggest that council officers and elected councillors use that time to consider the good, the bad, and the ugly consequences around their choice to get this sorted. If not, they can accept responsibility for any strike action and inconvenience caused for the residents of Adur & Worthing, which may come back to haunt them come the upcoming local elections.
Gary Palmer, GMB Regional Organiser said: “Continued belligerence by council management will see residents’ rubbish uncollected and the streets dirty for a sustained period of industrial action.
“It needn’t be this way, but our members’ perfectly legitimate concerns need addressing; not through informal methods offered by the council, but via formal negotiations with their chosen trade union.
“GMB union will use all means at our disposal to ensure we get a decent deal for our members, and though it is always a last resort, this includes industrial action.
“It’s now down to the council, and especially Catherine Howe and Paul Brewer, to make the next move. Let’s hope it’s the right one for all concerned in Adur & Worthing.”
Contact: Mark Turner on 07860787973 or Gary Palmer on 07552165950