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19 February 2019, 09:13 | Updated: 19 February 2019, 09:21
Bin strikes have started again in Birmingham, in a row over pay and conditions.
Unite the Union say the dispute is a result of Birmingham City Council making secret payments to refuse workers who did not take part in the 2017 bin strikes. Unite has argued that the payments amount to the blacklisting of its members and has argued that all workers should receive an equal payment, a proposal rejected by the council.
#WATCH Howard Beckett from @UniteUnion has told us these strikes could run on and on if things aren’t resolved between Birmingham’s bin workers and @BhamCityCouncil #HeartNews pic.twitter.com/OW4pSqapG1— Heart West Midlands News (@HeartWMidsNews) February 19, 2019
Peace talks aimed at resolving the dispute collapsed last week, when Birmingham council made a poorer offer than that which was previously on the table.
#WATCH We’ve spoken to @CllrMajid who’s come out in support of bin workers on strike at #Tyseley after talks between @BhamCityCouncil and @UniteUnion collapsed yesterday over supposed secret payments to workers...#HeartNews pic.twitter.com/bxsVKhaoyb— Heart West Midlands News (@HeartWMidsNews) February 19, 2019
A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said: "We are hearing yet more misleading comments from Unite in response to their failure to secure an injunction against our efforts to provide the best possible waste collections during the industrial action they have instigated.
"All city council employees who deliver waste collection services have health and safety responsibilities - it is not exclusive to a certain grade or role.
"The same can be said for any agency or contract worker we utilise for missed collections or the contingency plan to mitigate the effects of the current industrial action.
"As stated previously, we have put a reasonable offer on the table to end this dispute. We'd urge the trades unions to put this to their members so they can give it the serious consideration it deserves.
"We need to get back to the task of providing a service that citizens expect and deserve."
The following covers claims of 'secret payments' or 'blacklisting':
"We have made it very clear that the payments to GMB members at the root of this dispute were made as a result of a failure to consult by the council during the negotiations that ended the 2017 dispute. They were not payments for working during the industrial action."