The ballot for industrial action over pay was issued on 10 June. Many of you have now returned this, however we need all members to have their say in this crucial vote.
If you haven’t voted, please do so now.
If you haven’t received your ballot, call 0131 556 9676 immediately to check your details with the office and get a replacement ballot.
COSLA’s offer of a 2% rise—in fact a dramatic pay cut, given that inflation is currently at 11.7%—is a slap in the face to the dedicated workforce in the Council. We must take a stand against this, so are recommending all workers vote YES for industrial action.
We have been non-stop raising the issue of Council worker pay and speaking to members to ensure the success of this ballot. Below you can see some of our actions over the past few weeks.
We recently met with management to discuss changes to working arrangements in Waste and Cleansing as a result of changes to Scottish Government guidance and restrictions being lifted. The message from senior management is clear—there will be no sudden changes, you will be informed in advanced and they will meet with the unions before anything changes.
We made clear that we were concerned with what we believe is a rushed removal of vital safety measures in the community and that ensuring workers safety is paramount.
Andy Williams summarised the Council’s current position:
Looking for a permanent drivers job in Waste and Cleansing?
The Council are recruiting to permanent positions for Waste and Cleansing Driver Crew Leaders.
Unite have been campaigning to reduce agency spend in the Council and ensure internal candidates have support in their applications for these jobs, so we are delighted that the Council are offering support and interview skills assistance for current staff and agency staff that are looking to apply.
If you work in Waste and Cleansing, contact your line manager for details of this.
Unite: committed to the physical and mental health of workers
We are committed to ensuring that the mental and physical wellbeing of workers is a priority. Public transport and shops in Scotland now require you to wear a face coverings, so we have stepped up to provide face coverings for frontline workers in the City of Edinburgh Council.
We are commitment to doing all that we can to ensure that all working environments are safe for our members.
Craig Cummings, branch convener, talks us through the face covering debate below.
Following Scotland’s First Minister’s announcement that recycling centres will be reopening from 1 June, Unite has been engaged with CoSLA to secure safe working practices for all members.
Unite was disappointed to learn that a body – without a voice for the workers – had already been meeting and determining the best way to reopen the centres. This is unacceptable as Unite believes that this body has not examined the real challenges workers will face in practice.
The Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Crisis is having a huge impact in every corner of society at present.
Those who work in Edinburgh Council’s Waste Services have been categorised by the Council as Key or Essential Workers. This is the same as workers in Waste Collection in all Scottish Councils.
Although Waste Collection workers are required to attend at work, so long as you are healthy and do not require to be off for any of the reasons outlined by the government, you have a right to have your health and safety at work safeguarded by your employer.
The Branch had been receiving numerous reports from members in Waste Services who were deeply concerned about current safety practices in Waste Services. As a result the Branch undertook to speak to as many people employed in Waste Services as possible so as to get a full and accurate picture to take back to Council management.