Sheffield bin strike: Workers protest over pay and warn of more strikes

Over 100 Sheffield bin collectors have taken to the streets in a four-hour protest over an 'unfair' pay deal today.

Monday, 8th November 2021, 1:06 pm

The GMB union, which organised the protest, said the strike went ahead after it was suspended last week to allow its members to vote on a new pay offer put forward by waste collection company Veolia.

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Now that the offer has been rejected by GMB members, workers are demanding their employers to come up with a 'more reasonable' deal or face further strike action.

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About 100 bin collectors went on strike on Monday morning over pay deal dispute

The refuse workers had previously voted for industrial action after receiving a below inflation pay offer from Veolia – the firm that deals with the city's rubbish on behalf of Sheffield City Council.

Clad in hi-vis vests, bin collectors held placards that said 'we demand a better deal' as they marched from their Lumley Street depot to Sheffield Town Hall, and returned to the Veolia site just before 9am.

Speaking at the protest, GMB Union representative, Michael Hinchcliffe said: “We have asked for a reasonable pay rise but Veolia so far do not want to talk about a pay rise.

“We have a meeting with them tomorrow, hopefully we'll make some progress and we will discuss the latest offer.

Over 100 bin collectors went on strike on Monday morning over pay hike dispute. GMB Union says more strikes are being planned.

“They want a pay rise that reflects the hard work they put in throughout the pandemic.”

‘The deal is not going to cut it’

He said the initial deal that was offered to the commercial division was a three per cent increase on a two-year deal with a £500 payment, which was acceptable six months ago but not now.

"The deal was reasonable when we first started talking in March and April but since then we have had a national insurance hike, we have had inflation now running at five per cent and the offer is not just acceptable.

“So the three per cent hike on a two-year deal is not going to cut it now,” he said.

Their strike went on until 10.30am, with a similar protest being planned on Monday, November 15) and an 'all out' strike the following week on November 22.

The action is said to have affected more than 200,000 homes across Sheffield.