Wealden bin strikes: Pop-up waste site opens


A pop-up waste disposal site has opened as a strike by refuse workers in Wealden enters a fourth week.

The site in Vicarage Lane in Hailsham, East Sussex, is open from 08:00 to 14:00 GMT on Wednesday for regular, bagged household rubbish disposal.

Members of the GMB union working for Wealden District Council (WDC) contractor Biffa began strike action last month in a dispute over pay.

A pay offer made by Biffa on 25 April was rejected by GMB members.

The council said: “These facilities are for the disposal of bagged regular household rubbish i.e. the black bin bags that would normally go into your rubbish bin.

“No garden waste, recycling, electrical or any other waste will be accepted.”

The authority warned residents: “Any rubbish deposited outside of the dates and times stated will be treated as fly tipping and may lead to a fixed penalty notice and/or criminal prosecution.”

Pay offer ‘well short’
Biffa workers who are members of the Unison union accepted the deal, which WDC said marked a 17% annual pay increase.

In a statement WDC said “approximately half of the rubbish collections” in the area were not operating, along with garden and recycling waste collections.

In March, GMB members in nearby Adur and Worthing took part in long-running strike action over a similar pay dispute.

Gary Palmer from the GMB said:  ‘Biffa’s offer is well short of our members’ expectations.

“Coming off the back of the long running Adur and Worthing dispute, it should be clear GMB will back our members all the way if they need to undertake a strike of attrition to get what they deserve. ”

The GMB Union says it plans to extend strike action in Wealden until 11 June.

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Olivia Wilson
By Olivia Wilson


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