Unite, the UK’s and Ireland’s largest union, has reported that today (19 February) the first day of strike action in the Birmingham bin dispute, has been ‘rock solid’.

The dispute is a result of Birmingham 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, which Birmingham council has rejected.

Unite assistant general secretary Howard Beckett said: “I would like to pay tribute to Unite members who have demonstrated their solidarity and their determination to overturn the injustice of the council making secret payments to workers who did not take part in the 2017 strike action.

“The rock solid support from Unite’s members should send a clear message to Birmingham council’s leadership that our members will not be swayed by threats and are determined to win justice.

“This strike is of Birmingham council’s making and the solution is in their hands. They need to return to the negotiating table and offer equal payments to Unite members.

“The residents of Birmingham will not thank the council for creating this dispute and then not resolving it.”

Unite has produced a short film to explain why the union has been forced to take strike action.

ENDS

Notes to editors:

Birmingham bin strike to start in ‘secret payments’ and ‘blacklisting dispute’

The strike dates that Unite has announced are: Tuesday 19 February, Friday 22 February, Wednesday 27 February, Thursday 28 February, Monday 4 March, Friday 8 March, Tuesday 12 March, Wednesday 13 March, Thursday 21 March, Friday 22 March.

In the industrial action ballot which was announced on December 14 the workers voted by 94 per cent in favour of strike action and 97 per cent for industrial action short of a strike.

For more information please contact Unite communications officer Barckley Sumner on 020 3371 2067 or 07802 329235.

Email: barckley.sumner@unitetheunion.org

Twitter: @unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1 Web: unitetheunion.org

Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.