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Sheffield recycling workers to start indefinite action
Thirty Sheffield recycling workers at The Green Company continued their dispute for premium pay, welfare facilities and against bullying management with strike action on 25 and 26 October, and have given notice of an indefinite strike from Wednesday 29 November.
GMB union shop steward Jim Rodgers spoke at a Sheffield Socialist Party meeting.
"After our last strike (against jobs and pay cuts two years ago), we forced them to get rid of the bad managers. A new better senior management team (SMT) was brought in.
We got the living wage in April. We had more work so could open the sites an extra hour a day. The future was looking good.
Then about ten weeks ago, I rang to speak to one of the SMT only to be told one was on leave (really suspended), one had resigned, and the other on sick!
'Who am I speaking to then?'
'I'm Martine Laffan-Butler, the boss of the charity'! That was the first I'd heard of her.
Since then, we've found out that over the last four months it's alleged that she has skimmed £60,000 off the contract (to run Sheffield recycling sites, subcontracted from Veolia the private company that run the council's waste management services).
The former finance director who blew the whistle has been suspended and the other two SMT left.
So all this has been going on while we've been told that there's not enough money for premium rates for weekends and overtime or for welfare facilities on two of the five sites.
That's why we are on strike and I'd like to thank you all for your support on the picket lines, blocking lorries.
We want to be taken back in-house or for us workers to run it as a cooperative. If things aren't sorted then we are going all-out from Wednesday."
In The Socialist 29 October 2014:
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