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28th Jun, 2022

Rugby bin workers to go on strike for two weeks

Editorial Correspondent 21st Apr, 2022 Updated: 21st Apr, 2022

BIN workers in Rugby will go on strike for two weeks, beginning on Tuesday (April 26).

Members of Unite the Union who work in Rugby Borough Council’s (RBC) refuse, recycling and street cleansing services have voted to go on strike over pay.

Rugby Borough Council (RBC) said the industrial action ‘looks set to impact bin collections, recycling and street cleaning’.

The council said it was informed the decision relates to the recently agreed 1.75 per cent pay rise for local government workers, which was negotiated nationally by the National Joint Council for Local Government Services and agreed by the Unison and GMB trade unions.

An RBC spokesman said: “We understand members of Unite intend to take targeted industrial action over the national pay settlement at a number of councils across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

“RBC remains committed to maintaining an open, constructive dialogue with Unite while working to minimise the impact of any industrial action on our residents.

“Rugby Borough Council cannot negotiate pay awards at a local level.”

A Unite spokesperson disputed the latter claim.

Unite regional officer Zoe Mayou said: “It is not true that the council is unable to enter pay negotiations with its own employees. The Local Government Association’s proposal is exactly that, a proposal. The council can disregard it and table its own offer.

“The 1.75 per cent increase imposed by the council is a slap in the face for workers who were on the front line keeping the residents of Rugby safe during the pandemic. The pay offer does next to nothing to alleviate the cost-of-living crisis faced by these essential workers.

“After a year of prevaricating, the blame for rubbish piling up across Rugby lies squarely with the Tory controlled Borough Council. It’s time to pay these essential workers a decent wage. This industrial action can still be avoided if Rugby council puts forward a deal our members can accept.”

RBC said it would keep residents informed of disruption to services when more information was available. Visit www.rugby.gov.uk/servicedisruption for updates.

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