Salma Yaqoob, Respect councillor for Sparkbrook ward speaks about the Refuse Worker strike, placing the blame for the rubbish pile up squarely at the door of the council who are seeking to implement £4,000 pay cuts
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Two articles online at Birmingham Mail today about the refuse workers strike:
A TRIPLE whammy of strike action, snow and the regular Christmas increase in waste food and packaging has left Birmingham’s refuse collection service overwhelmed and piles of black bags in the streets
A mixture of supportive and not so supportive letters from Mail readers, and I would imagine letters will continue to come into the newspaper about the strike and it’s aftermath.
firstname.lastname@example.org is their email address.
The local media coverage of the strike shows that it is having a noticeable effect. In the first article, Kevin Mitchell – Assistant director of fleet and waste management – said
he recognised that the unions, Unite, GMB, Unison and UCATT, had timed their industrial action to perfection and caused maximum disruption to the service.
“The unions’ action was strategically spot on,” he said.
We hope the strike and work to rule actions prove as effective in ensuring the council meet the unions demands as they have been in generating local news coverage.
Right to Work report on Fleet and Refuse Mgt. strike:
The overtime ban by refuse workers in Birmingham, alongside their 1 day strike on Monday 20th December, has hit the ConDem council hard.
A report from the Guardian following Eric Pickles’ council budget announcements says this:
On [14th December], Eric Pickles, the communities secretary, revealed that Birmingham faces a reduction in spending power of 8.32%, which is almost double the national average and just under the maximum amount to be imposed nationwide.
The reality is that Birmingham council estimates it needs to cut £300m in expenditure over the next four years, which translates into £300,000 for each working day. Plans have been announced to eliminate approximately 10,000 public sector jobs through redundancies and early retirement, which is devastating for a city with an unemployment rate already of 13.5%, well above the national average of 7.9%.
The full article is here
Birmingham has the highest unemployment rate of any city in the UK, and has 3 of the 5 parliamentary constituences with the highest rate of unemployment in the UK, but we will face almost the maximum budget cuts whilst wealthy constituencies face only a small reduction in spending resources.
Birmingham can ill afford to lose 10,000 council jobs with the knock on effects that the TUC has shown this will have [link].
Birmingham should not be facing cuts at all, there are alternatives to the cuts. Birmingham should certainly not be facing amongst the largest % reductions in spending in the UK. These cuts will harm the economy, both locally and nationally, and will hit the poorest hardest.