A large black bin sits in front of red metal garage
Credit: Siahrei Plashchynski via Unsplash

Glasgow binmen strikes back on

By Hailie Pentleton

GMB refuse collectors will participate in a walkout from midnight tonight.

This afternoon GMB confirmed that the cleansing service in Glasgow City Council will take strike action throughout the first full week of COP26. From midnight tonight, GMB refuse collectors will participate in a walkout, after previously calling the strike action off on Friday. 

Unions had agreed to call off industrial action planned for over the UN Climate Change Conference after an 11th hour offer from the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA). After originally submitting a £2000 claim with Unison and Unite, GMB agreed to consider an offer tabled by COSLA for a one-year. 5.89 per cent increase for the lowest paid local government workers, as part of a £1062 pay rise for all staff earning below £25,000.

However, GMB informed Glasgow City Council this afternoon that the planned strike action will proceed. 

GMB Scotland Secretary Louise Gilmour stated: “The council has failed to give our members the proper time and space to consider the 11th-hour offer from COSLA.”

“The fact the council moved to block strike action in the Court of Session using anti-trade union legislation, means there is too much bad faith among members towards the employer”.

“Therefore, our members in cleansing have informed us that they will still proceed with the planned strike action from 00.01 hours Monday 1 November. We are calling for an urgent meeting with the council as soon as possible and we will work until one minute to midnight tonight to try and fix this.”

“We have also made the Scottish Government aware of the situation and are liaising with the First Minister’s Office, but without any further dialogue the cleansing service in Glasgow City Council will take strike action from tomorrow and throughout the first full week of the COP26 summit.”

Drew Duffy of GMB also stated that “[T]he fact that it’s taken to the brink of the COP to get this offer speaks volumes to our members.”

“[I]t’s clear that ministers and employers must show far more respect to the people providing vital local services.”

Glasgow City Council has been contacted for comment.


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