Sheffield council workers threatened and verbally abused by residents at recycling centres

Sheffield City Council have issued an ‘urgent plea’ to visitors at household waste recycling centres after workers were threatened and verbally abused by residents while doing their job.

Thursday, 25th February 2021, 10:58 am

The local authority has encouraged people in Sheffield frequenting the waste disposal sites to respect staff and abide by Covid-19 restrictions to prevent delays and centres being closed to protect workers.

It comes after a number of recent incidents where people visiting the sites have threatened and verbally abused staff members according to the council.

In a statement posted online, Sheffield City Council said: “We are incredibly proud that we’ve been able to keep our five household waste recycling centres open across Sheffield during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Sheffield City Council are urging visitors to respect staff at household waste recycling centres after staff were verbally abused. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS / AFP) (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

“The hard work and commitment from our workforce during this difficult time has enabled us to do this.

“Unfortunately, despite working tirelessly to ensure that residents are kept safe when using the sites, there has been a number of recent incidents where people visiting the sites have threatened and verbally abused staff members.

“Sheffield City Council and Veolia will not tolerate any physical or verbal threats to its workforce, and all such incidents will be reported to the police.

"It may result in sites being closed.”

The local authority admitted they are unable to allow as many visits to household waste recycling centres as usual as they have to limit the number of people due to social distancing and to keep the public and their staff safe.

But sites can only remain open if residents co-operate and use the areas ‘safely and responsibly’ according to the council, who added it was ‘critical’ that workers are listened to.

Visitors should not queue outside recycling centres and drivers will initially be asked to move on by site staff and failure to do so could result in a £70 fine.

Only one person should visit a site and if large numbers visit the centres or fail to follow the guidelines, the council will close the recycling sites.

Residents with significant amounts of DIY and garden waste are encouraged to consider contacting a registered skip hire company.

While people are reminded that they can arrange for collections to take place from their home.

For more information about the city’s waste and recycling services, visit: www.sheffield.gov.uk/waste and check queuing times on Twitter @recycle4shef.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.