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Bin strike brewing after Serco ignores ignores own safety rules

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20 Dec 2019
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A bin collectors strike is brewing in Sandwell after private outsourcing company Serco urged workers to ignore the company’s own safety rules.

The ballot for industrial action closes on January 6.

Serco has removed two rounds from the Sandwell domestic waste contract and put the work onto existing crews - This is in on top of all the new build houses placed onto rounds over the last few years.

This has raised serious concerns about health and safety as workers are having to cut corners to try and get work finished.

But when GMB advised members to make sure they follow the company's safe working practices, Serco hauled workers into management meetings about their performance levels.

Initial talks with the company failed to reach a resolution, so GMB offered mediation through ACAS. Unfortunately, this has not yet led to an agreed way forward.

GMB is now balloting our members for industrial action.

Darren James, GMB Branch Secretary, said:

“We’ve tried to resolve this amicably both directly with the council and via Acas, but Serco isn’t listening.

“The bottom line is the safety of the public and our hard-working bin collectors has got to come before saving a few quid.

“Hopefully the council and Serco will realise this and industrial action can be averted.”

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