Unite will engage with management over council proposals and to defend members’ interests
Outsourcing bin collection can undermine the ability to deliver a cohesive approach to waste reduction and recycling initiatives
April 3rd: In response to media inquiries, Unite Regional Officer, Michael Keenan, has confirmed his union’s awareness of Antrim & Newtownabbey council management proposals that could see bin collection services outsourced:
“Unite, which represents waste collection workers at Antrim & Newtownabbey Council, was informed only last week that management have plans to outsource bin collection services.
“They are considering three options – all of which will involve some degree of outsourcing. These options threaten potential redundancies for our members since, in some cases management are considering, employees may be denied rights under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment), TUPE legislation. There are also likely potential impacts to terms and conditions.
“Unite is completely opposed to any outsourcing of this service. In the days to come, as well as meeting representatives of the council, we will be discussing with our membership on the ground to decide the most appropriate next steps.
“Unite believes public services, such as the collection of waste, are best kept in both public ownership and delivery. So called savings arising from outsourcing are usually only ‘false economies’ delivered through cutting corners on service quality and/or attacks on workers’ pay and conditions.
“Moreover the experience of waste collection being outsourced elsewhere has been overwhelmingly negative as its means councils lose control over waste streams undermining their ability to bring forward effective waste reduction and recycling initiatives.
“Despite our strong opposition to outsourcing, Unite will attempt to adopt a positive approach to negotiations with management but we are determined to secure the best possible outcome for our members and to defend their jobs at all costs”, Mr Keenan ended.