GMB waste and recycling members vote for strike action

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Ballot result means the Isle of Wight waste contractor Amey’s operatives and drivers will walk out on the 13th of June for an initial first phase of two weeks.  

‘All the GMB union can do now is simply wait and see if Amey seeks the sensible option’ says GMB Southern 

GMB, the union for all waste and recycling operatives and drivers, have informed waste contractor Amey of the strike action ballot result and given notice to commence industrial action. 

The ballot result which saw 90.5% vote for strike action on a ballot turnout of 77.8% means that the first day of action will commence on Monday 13th June for two weeks, with further notices being issued should Amey continue to refuse to engage and negotiate with the GMB as their own employee's union of choice. 

The Dispute comes about as the islands waste contractor refuses to match the pay expectations of their own hard-working staff. 

The members are looking for Loaders/Pickers to be paid £12.50 ph, cage drivers and all driver & grab operatives to be paid £13.25 ph and HGV Drivers to receive £15.00 ph. 

The pay claim presented by the GMB on behalf of its members which has to date been ignored is simply one which our members feel is more representative of a rate for the work they deliver in collecting the islands residents rubbish efficiently and effectively on a day-to-day basis. 

Gary Palmer GMB Regional Organiser said: 

“Amey has and continues to make two mistakes, the first is they are ignoring their own employee's choice of the GMB union to represent their pay claim. Regardless of any disputed recognition status, GMB are not going away, and their staff have backed GMB to take forward their pay claim. 

“The other is to continue to undervalue their employees to maintain their own profits for shareholders. GMB members and importantly Amey staff are struggling economically, they are working as hard as they can, but they face in work poverty. They have to make decisions on what to spend and when daily and are stressed by finding they are falling further into further debt weekly.  

“To be clear Amey are like all national organisations who look to take huge profits made on the Isle of Wight off the Island, our members who all live on the island were they to get a decent and fair pay rise live on the island so consequently will spend the money locally in shops and business based on the island boosting the local economy. 

“Right now, this strike is going to happen, but it can be avoided if Amey seeks to enter meaningful talks with the GMB to resolve the current pay issue, if not any and all consequences regarding the island kerbside refuse and recycling collections and any effect on the upcoming Isle of wight festival lies solely with them.  

“All the GMB union can do now is simply wait and see if Amey seeks the sensible option.”