Hopes grow but … bin strike still on despite nine hours of talks

Posted On 15 Oct 2021 at 7:11 pm

The bin lorry drivers’ strike is still on despite more than nine hours of talks today (Friday 15 October).

Officials from the GMB union met senior officials from Brighton and Hove City Council at 9am.

The talks, held at Hove Town Hall, ended at about 6.30pm, with some holding out the prospect of the deadlock being broken.

Both sides appear to believe that they have the basis for a deal although the GMB is understood to want any offer in writing before being willing to put it to members.

And council chiefs are likely to seek the sign off of senior politicians – starting with the three party leaders.

If two of the three leaders back officials, an offer in principle could be sent to the GMB.

And if their members accept the terms, the strike could be suspended at Cityclean, the council’s rubbish and recycling service.

Before the meeting today the GMB tweeted: “We have read the council’s new offer and there is still some significant issues with it so it’s not over until it’s over but we will be attending a meeting at 9am to seek resolution on the refuse and recycling and commercial waste service.”

When the meeting ended, most of the main issues appeared to have been ironed out – subject to political sign-off and the approval of the striking bin lorry drivers.

However, there was optimism this time last week, only for those hopes of a resolution to be dashed at the start of this week.

Earlier a GMB official said: “We had the hokey-cokey last week. We walked out on Friday thinking that we had a deal and when they came back on Monday, we didn’t.”

Now, it is understood that a raft of details remain to be settled although these could form the subject of further talks once the strike is suspended.

Concerns remain over how and when the backlog of rubbish will be cleared.

The GMB is understood to have offered to meet council negotiators tomorrow (Saturday 16 October) but it was unclear whether any offer could go before members before Monday.

The current two-week strike is due to end on Sunday (17 October), with drivers expected to return to work on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday before going out back on strike.

If a deal cannot be reached, drivers are scheduled to resume their strike at the Hollingdean depot from next Thursday (21 October) until Sunday 21 November.

  1. Linda Jameson Reply

    It’s clear the GMB don’t want to settle the dispute. They’ve been offered everything they had an issue with, they’ve been offered money they didn’t ask for but still they want to wage war with the city.

  2. Rufus Reply

    If they want more money they should have studies more at school and perhaps would have decent job

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