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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 July 2018

Summer of discontent on the cards in Huddersfield bin workers' dispute

Bins, photo Ivor Ibrahamsen (Creative Commons)

Bins, photo Ivor Ibrahamsen (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

Michaela Bower, Huddersfield Socialist Party

50 bin workers, union members and supporters came together for a march on 6 July from the waste depot to Huddersfield Town Hall in protest against bullying and racism by management, and a refusal to allow bin workers to take leave for holidays and medical appointments.

They then held a rally outside with speakers including Angie Waller from Unison and Mike Forster, secretary of the Huddersfield Socialist Party.

Kirklees bin workers walked out from 3-9 July after voting unanimously for industrial action after talks with the council collapsed, and the mood on the picket lines was strong.

With a lack of recruitment of new workers, the current workers have been struggling to keep up with the rounds, especially with 8,000 of a planned 30,000 new homes built in Kirklees in the last few years. Kirklees Council did make an offer before the strike of additional agency staff. However the workforce know that what is needed is guaranteed jobs with acceptable conditions, so this offer was rejected.

After the successful rally, the workers then held a meeting and voted overwhelmingly in support of an indefinite strike from 31 July should the council fail to meet their demands.

The bin workers reported that those who had been refused time off included an instance where a workers' daughter was being taken to hospital after breaking her leg. The worker, like any concerned parent, wanted to go to the hospital to be with his daughter and comfort her, yet this was refused.

If the council dares to say there isn't the money to hire new staff, then they will be reminded of the 1.6 million the council recently received as a bonus - for cutting their budgets!

Should the indefinite strike go ahead from 31 July, Huddersfield Socialist Party will be setting up a support group for the bin workers, working alongside the local trade union council, and taking in donations and running stalls to help support the striking workers.

This looks like it could be a hot summer of discontent in Huddersfield, unless Kirklees Council removes the bullying and racist managers, and invests money in the refuse services to allow workers to do their jobs properly and safely.

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In The Socialist 11 July 2018:


What we think

Tories in crisis - Act now to get them out!


News

600 more retail jobs on the line: workers must not pay for the bosses' high street crunch!

Britain bakes as water pipelines leak

Minister's benefits lie: sack the Tories - and scrap universal credit

Them & Us


Trump and the US

Hit the streets against Trump and capitalism

US: "We've had to build a huge culture of resistance"


NSSN conference

NSSN conference 2018: Mood for fighting action and coordination


Workplace

Big victory for Wigan NHS strike against privatisation

Campaign in full flow to squeeze out every last Yes vote in pay ballot

Hackney traffic wardens strike for better pay and protection at work

Summer of discontent on the cards in Huddersfield bin workers' dispute

Tyneside shopfitting plant lays off 61 workers

Unite conference sees union go in a fighting, socialist direction

Pressure building on councillors to stop fire service cuts

Tram workers strike against 'derisory' pay offer


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Stop the FLA - No to racism

Women's Lives Matter launched in Leeds to fight domestic violence service cuts

Service users and families protest learning disability service cuts

NHS Leeds: Campaigners halt outsourcing... for now

Yes to NHS - No to PFI!

Tories fractured... election possibility... give us the resources!

Issue 1000 drive shows sales potential


 

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Related links:

Huddersfield:

triangleLaunch of Huddersfield Women's Lives Matter

triangleHuddersfield Socialist Party: '12 years to save the world' - A socialist answer to climate change

triangleHuddersfield Socialist Party: The rise of the populist right in Latin America

triangleHuddersfield Socialist Party: Marxist feminism

triangleRacist attack in Huddersfield

Bin workers:

triangleVictory to Birmingham bin workers

triangleBirmingham: hostile Labour council attacks striking workers

triangleBlairite Birmingham steps up union-busting and two workforces plan strikes

Kirklees:

triangleKirklees bin workers' strike forces management back

Bullying:

triangleHamilton posties walk out against bullying

Waste:

triangleVeolia waste workers vote for action in Cheshire

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