Temporary service changes to bin collections next week due to strike action

Sandwell residents are being made aware that some employees at Serco, Sandwell Council’s waste service provider, will be taking strike action next week Tuesday (31 August). Sandwell Council’s focus is to ensure that the disruption caused to bin collections is kept to a minimum.

The council has agreed to suspend garden waste collections from Monday (30 August) to Friday (3 September) to allow the remaining staff to concentrate on the collection of domestic waste and recycling bins.

On the day of the strike, Tuesday (31 August), bin crews will prioritise domestic waste bin collections.

Recycling bin collections will take place, however residents should be aware there may be delays to these collections.

Residents who do not receive a collection on their usual day, should leave bins out until they have been emptied.

This will be done as soon as possible.

Those residents affected by the suspension of garden waste collections who are unable to wait until their next collection day may wish to take their garden waste to the tip.

Bookings for the tip can be made by visiting the council website at www.sandwell.gov.uk/tip Iain Stockdale-Smith, Senior Contract Manager for Serco, said: “We have had many positive meetings with the GMB Union over the last few months and significant progress has been made on the issues raised.

Although we are naturally disappointed to receive confirmation of planned industrial action on 31 August, we are pleased that this week’s meeting with the GMB Union, alongside mediator ACAS, has resulted in reconsideration of a full strike schedule. “During official industrial action, the law prevents us from bringing in additional staff to replace those on strike, but we want to assure residents we will try to keep any disruption to a minimum and our teams will be working hard behind the scenes to organise the resources we have in the most effective way.” Councillor Maria Crompton, Deputy Leader and cabinet member for strong and resilient communities, said: “We are disappointed to hear about strike actions taking place by some Serco employees. “As a council we will be working hard to ensure that any disruption is kept to an absolute minimum for our residents and we hope that Serco is able to work with its employees and the trade unions to resolve the ongoing dispute without any further disruption to residents.”

Residents should put their household waste and blue lid recycling bins out as normal on their usual collection day during the strike period. If the bins in a particular street are not emptied on the usual day, please leave them out and they will be emptied as soon as possible. Residents will be kept up-to-date with any changes or delays to waste and recycling services via the Sandwell Council website, Twitter, Facebook and email updates. To subscribe to email updates, go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/emailupdates

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