Rubbish festers on a Birmingham street amid binmen strike

Piles of rubbish fester on a Birmingham street… and that’s BEFORE the city’s strike by binmen has even begun!

  • Rubbish collectors in Birmingham have refused to do overtime since December 
  • Naveed Mohammed, 66, said that piles of waste have been left on the roadside
  • The father said that the rubbish has attracted rats and created an awful smell  

Piles of rubbish fester in the street… and this was before today’s strike by binmen in Birmingham began.

The sacks were seen in the Bordesley Green area of the city at the weekend, a result of binmen refusing to do overtime since December 29 in a dispute about payments.

Their union Unite accused the Labour-run city council of making extra payments to members of the GMB union who chose not to join a 2017 strike. 

Earlier this month, Unite announced that it was escalating its latest action and members will strike for two days a week from today.

Piles of bin bags on the city’s James Turner Street, in Winson Green – a road made famous by the Channel 4 documentary Benefits Street – after binmen have refused to do overtime since December 

Heaps of rubbish in Kenelm Road, Small Heath during bin workers talks last month 

  • Councils fail to collect 5,000 bins every DAY: Complaints…

    Bin men go on strike in Birmingham AGAIN two years after…

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The unwelcome move comes at a time when the council is looking to build and promote a positive image of the city ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games, and comes as the Government consults on plans to introduce weekly food waste collections nationwide.

Under plans aimed at standardising household recycling across local authorities, ministers are also consulting on bringing in a deposit return scheme for drinks, bottles and cans, as well as a tax on plastic packaging with less than 30 per cent recycled content.

Naveed Mohammed, 66, a resident of Small Heath, another area affected, said rubbish had been gathering on his street for weeks.

He added: ‘If it’s like this now, imagine what it’s going to be like when the strike actually starts. I’ve seen rats and the smell is terrible.

‘I have two young children and you don’t want to let them out in the street.

‘It can’t be good for their health and it makes you ashamed to be a Brummie. They need to come to some sort of resolution and quickly.’

Howard Beckett, Unite’s assistant general secretary, said: ‘The decision to escalate the dispute and begin strike action is a direct result of Birmingham council’s failure to treat our members fairly.

‘Rather than settle this dispute and end the discrimination the council has instead chosen to try to utilise anti-trade union laws and is penalising workers who have been taking industrial action by denying them their holiday requests.

‘Unite’s members have taken the decision to move to full strike action as a last resort due to the council’s refusal to make a fair offer to resolve this dispute.

‘This dispute is entirely of Birmingham council’s making and it is in the council’s hands to come forward with a solution to end the discrimination experienced by Unite members.

‘If they fail to do so then the city’s residents will regrettably experience further disruption to their refuse service in the coming weeks.’ 

Last month the Labour-run authority announced it would start collecting rubbish on a fortnightly basis as the dispute over pay rumbled on.

A Birmingham City Council spokesman said: ‘We would urge Unite to continue talks as we want to resolve this matter, so citizens get the refuse collection service they rightly expect and deserve.’

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