Sheffield GMB Recycling Workers Dispute
Workers at five waste recycling centres in Sheffield in South Yorkshire have walked out in an open-
ended strike over poverty pay, bullying and a lack of basic facilities. The workers, members of
general union GMB, are employed by the Green Company – a subcontractor for privateer Veolia
which operates Sheffield City Council’s £38M recycling and waste disposal contract
GMB has accused managers of bullying workers, including some who have mental-health issues and
learning difficulties, and failing to provide them with enough toilet and washing facilities. The union
added that the firm is in turmoil with a senior management team sacked after agreeing to pay
workers the living wage. The action follows a nine-day strike in early October and now overtime pay
has been attacked.
GMB regional officer Peter Davies said: “GMB members are taking strike action over premium rates,
welfare facilities and bullying. We know the company can afford to provide these basic conditions
but they will not budge.”Mr Davies claimed that some workers had already been sacked for bravely
taking a stand, with those remaining facing disciplinary processes.
“As with all bullies, the senior managers are picking on those who they see as the easiest targets first
and this includes at least three disabled workers with mental health and learning difficulties, who
have been subjected to disciplinary action for alleged gross misconduct,” he added.
STOP PRESS: Sheffield City Council leaders have responded to pressure form GMB to intervene in
the dispute, which is now suspended pending a satisfactory outcome.