Refuse workers in pay win

Welwyn and Hatfield bin strike ends as workers secure significant pay increase

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Strike action affecting Welwyn and Hatfield council’s refuse collection service has been resolved following several days of strike action.

The 90 plus members of Unite and employed by waste company Urbaser on Welwyn and Hatfield council’s outsourced refuse collection service, began strike action on Monday (June 19) in a dispute over pay.

However, following talks brokered by the conciliation service Acas yesterday (Wednesday 21 June) a greatly improved offer of a 13.5 per cent pay increase was made and accepted by the workforce. They will return to work on Friday (June 23) morning.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “This is a tremendous result, which was made possible by the absolute unity of our members. By standing together and taking industrial action, they ensured the employer made a vastly improved offer.

“This result demonstrates yet again how Unite’s relentless focus on jobs, pay and conditions is achieving direct financial benefits for its members.”

As part of the pay deal Urbaser also agreed to set up a working group to consider introducing sick pay and overtime premium payments.

Unite regional officer Richard Gates added, “Full credit has to go to the workforce and the reps for their hard work and dedication in ensuring the industrial action was a success.

“Unite will be looking on building on this year’s pay settlement in future negotiations with Urbaser.”

By Barckley Sumner