GMB Union to additionally ballot Cityclean Refuse and Recycling Loaders and Street cleansing teams operatives after dispute talks break down
‘It so disappointing as Friday’s meeting had left us with the impression that we had made good progress in moving towards a resolution and halting strike action, but today has seen a clear about turn and retraction of certain positional assurances by the council team' says GMB southern.
GMB have today sought to meet with Brighton & Hove Council with the aim of reaching an agreed way forward around the on-going dispute for city clean HGV drivers. The ongoing dispute and strike which is currently entering its second week appeared to be on course to be suspended whilst final details were worked on around a solution.
It was only when the meeting had commenced that the GMB were surprised to hear that in areas where we had believed an understanding in principle was in place, that in fact it was the case that the proposal from the Council had changed, and look very different one than expected and previously discussed.
Mark Turner GMB B50 Branch Secretary said:
«We are not sure what has happened over the weekend but, that’s some turnaround even for this green council, who we often associate with playing both ends of the stick towards the middle.
We were told that we would meet today, and that we should receive the paperwork for us to go through beforehand, instead the greens and its officers orchestrated our having to attend without prior information to go over and instead commenced with an immediate back track on prior possible points of agreement.
How they can then claim to be shocked when we just walked out, is unbelievable.
That’s a mistake I hope on behalf of the residents of this city they don’t end up regretting as matters escalate and unfortunately rubbish continues to pile up in the street
This is certainly not going to be well received by our members and I very much doubt that a conciliatory approach is going to be the first thought that crosses their minds. It does though of course support their opinion of their employer and council not valuing them and in supporting the bullying local regime which kicked this very dispute off.“
Gary Palmer GMB Regional Organiser said:
«I left the picket line today telling our members, fingers crossed for a deal today. Colleagues, I’m going back in the morning with a clear get stuffed two finger message instead for the workforce.
It is so disappointing as Friday’s meeting had left us with the impression that we had made good progress in moving towards a resolution and halting strike action, but today has seen a clear about turn and retraction of certain positional assurances by the council’s team.
How on earth did they think that they could dress up today’s meeting as anything other than a slap in the face for our members?
Not only do we now expect our members to carry on and possibly escalate their strike action, but I would expect our membership in additional areas within Cityclean to also demand our moving towards their own industrial ballot process in response to the council’s step back from a settlement.
We are of course ready to talk but the council are clearly not yet adversely worried about the state of the city, when they are we’ll be here waiting.»