Sheffield bin strike suspended, says Veolia, after new pay offer to GMB union
Plans for a permanent bin strike in Sheffield have been suspended, the waste contractor Veolia has confirmed, following talks with the GMB union.
Refuse workers had been set to walk out again on Monday, November 15, before going on strike indefinitely all day, every day from Monday, November 22, until the pay dispute with their employer was resolved.
But Veolia issued a statement this afternoon, Friday, November 12, saying the planned strike action had been put on hold and collections would go ahead as normal this coming Monday.
The GMB said industrial action, which would have affected more than 200,000 homes across the city, had been suspended so it could ballot members on a new pay offer from the company.
Why has the bin strike been suspended?
Veolia said: “We can confirm that following a meeting with GMB union representatives, the proposed strike action by the GMB union has been suspended. Residents’ waste and recycling collections will operate as usual on Monday 15 November and residents should put their bins out on their scheduled collection day.
“Our crews will be working across this weekend, so where residents’ bins have yet to be emptied we ask that they continue to leave them out until their waste has been collected. We would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused by the delays in collection.”
GMB members had previously rejected a pay offer from Veolia of a three per cent increase in year one and three per cent in year two, claiming this was unacceptable as inflation was now running at five per cent.
What is the new pay offer to refuse workers in Sheffield?
But union leaders said the firm had come back with an improved deal, which would now be put to the vote, of a three per cent increase in year one, a one-off £250 payment for each employee and a further 3.5 per cent rise in year two.
GMB organiser Lee Parkinson said: “I will be meeting with GMB members at Veolia on Monday to put the offer to them and once we know the outcome of the ballot, I will be meeting with the company.”
Veolia advised householders to visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/waste or follow @Recycle4Shef on Twitter for the latest updates about recycling and waste collections, which residents have reported are still being disrupted due to the backlog created by Monday’s strike.