April 13th is the scheduled date for the start of an all out three week strike by refuse workers, street cleaners and highway maintenance workers unless Thurrock Council back down at the last minute and see sense. This is how news of the strike was broken on Thurrock Nub News: Union announces three week long bin strike due to start on 13 April unless council backs down on changes to pay and conditions. The strike is in protest at pay cuts and the imposition of worse terms and conditions of employment.
This is the statement that was issued by Unite on Thursday April 1st:
“Council workers providing essential services throughout the pandemic to the residents of Thurrock will strike for three weeks because of Thurrock Council’s plans to brutally cut their pay and conditions.
“Refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners will take strike action from Tuesday 13 April until Friday 7 May, excluding 3 May.
“The very workers who have been supporting residents, by providing key services throughout the current health crisis, are furious that they are now the target of proposed cuts of between £2,000 – £3,500 a year for refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners.
“Meanwhile, the council has not proposed any cuts to the pay and conditions of senior management. Lyn Carpenter, the chief executive earns more than £200,000 a year.
“Unite regional officer Michelle Cook said: “Unite will not accept these proposals to slash the pay of these council heroes who have provided essential services to the residents of Thurrock throughout this pandemic.
“We have given the council months to rethink these brutal pay cuts which will leave key workers struggling to make ends meet. The council appears to be prepared to disrupt its residents’ key services and attack its employees’ conditions.
“Chief executive, Lyn Carpenter has a small window of opportunity to prevent this strike. We hope she will get around the negotiating table to avoid this dispute.”
Unite members and supporters will be leafleting the wards of a number of ruling group Tory councillors to explain to residents why they feel they have no option but to take strike action. This will take place on Wednesday 7th and Thursday 8th April in Stanford-le-Hope, Grays, Aveley and South Ockendon.
If you want to join us in showing solidarity with the workers, we have an A4 poster you can download, print off and put up.
You can download a PDF of this poster from here