Conservative Group Leader, Cllr. Geoffrey Theobald, is again urging GMB Union bosses to cancel their latest strike tomorrow after the Council’s Labour Group, following weeks of silence, finally decided to support the Conservative Group’s condemnation of the continuing strikes and ‘work to rule’.
Members of the Conservative Group have been inundated with complaints from residents about missed collections and rubbish spilling out of communal bins onto the streets. The problems have been particularly acute in areas whose normal collection days coincide with the strike days.
In a statement, Conservative Group Leader, Cllr. Geoffrey Theobald, said: “The GMB is now completely isolated and these refuse truck drivers should get back out there and stop their ‘work to rule’ and strikes straight away. Enough is enough. When even their comrades in the Labour Group are condemning their action they must surely realise that they have no support in our city. I just wish that the Labour Leader had come out strongly straight away, as I did, and maybe this would all have been resolved by now. I think that we have got to the point, particularly in the city centre – the heart of our tourist economy – where the Council must consider bringing in other staff to empty the communal bins, if nothing else, for health and safety reasons. What residents will find particularly annoying, given the service they are paying for through their council tax and not getting, is that Cityclean has 3 staff being paid by the Council to carry out Trade Union activities, in addition to the 7 other full-time Trade Union officials across the Council . What are they doing to help resolve this dispute by 28 drivers, whose action is stopping the other Cityclean workers doing their job? I’m just relieved that the Council doesn’t have any contracts to collect commercial waste in the city, or else the mess would be even worse than it already is.”