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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 February 2008

Collection cuts and bullying equals bin strike!

Brighton bin workers stood up to bullying managers last week after cuts to the city's refuse budget started to impact on already strained services.

Peter Knight, Brighton Socialist Party

Over 300 workers walked out for two days after crews were forced to cover up management's failure to provide backup trucks and enough trained staff for every round.

Last November the council slashed thousands of pounds from its own in-house Cityclean budget to spend elsewhere.

This has now resulted in crews going out short-handed, meaning rounds cannot be completed. By the end of the week some rounds are up to two days behind with workers forced to catch up!

A striking bin worker added: "As a result of these cuts a majority of the workers who are left are now agency workers so the council can treat them how they want. Now they're cutting back on using these agency staff with some told there's no work for a whole week even though there's loads to get done.

"How are people supposed to survive like that, not knowing when the next day's work is coming? And how is the collection of the city's rubbish supposed to get done when funding is cut like this?"

As the rubbish piled up across the streets of Brighton, so too did the pressure on council bosses who could see they were losing the battle and their resolve. In one incident that helped to spark the strike, workers were called: "too fat and lazy to do their jobs". On the third day management backed down and conceded that they would listen to the concerns of the bin workers.

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In The Socialist 20 February 2008:

No wage cuts! Fund equal pay


Demonstration

Troops out of Iraq now!


Socialist Party news

Stop the witch-hunt: Defend the Sheridan 7

Prison officers fight Labour's strike ban

Battle for Shropshire schools goes on

Coventry protests at Widdecombe's attacks

Football: Top of the League for greed


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Northern Rock - Labour's reluctant nationalisation

1918-2008: Clause 4 and nine decades of workers' struggles

Record fall in home ownership


Socialist Party NHS campaign

London's health care under further attack

Private clinics fail

Hospitals "stacking" patients

Fighting back and building a demo

"Not making sufficient profit"


Socialist Students

Universities in crisis: Fees favour the rich

Exeter students fight privatisation

Nottingham defends democracy


International socialist news and analysis

Kosovan independence - a dangerous mirage?

Greece: Second general strike in two months

CWI school in Latin America


Socialist Party review

Science, Marxism and the big bang


Socialist Party workplace news

It's official - Unison launches witch-hunt on Socialist Party

Socialist gains in Unison branch elections

Collection cuts and bullying equals bin strike!

Victory for council street wardens


Workplace news in brief

Rail pension dispute

Union merger: OILC and RMT

Marching against single status

Solidarity with Pakistan workers


 

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Related links:

Strike:

triangleNorth London Socialist Party: Save our NHS - the lessons of the Barts strike

triangleUni strike: coordinate public sector fightback

triangleBig political strike against Finnish government's attack on unemployed

triangleTeachers strike again as anti-academy pressure mounts

triangleDLR cleaners and security staff strike

Brighton:

triangleBernie's book shows need for workers' party

triangleHousing victory for Sussex students

triangleBrighton victory

triangleBrighton Uni lecturers strike against job cuts

Bin workers:

triangleKirklees bin workers ballot for strike over schedule and bullying

triangleBirmingham bin workers win!

triangleNSSN meeting brings together workers in struggle

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