Out with the old, in with the new. Or so the start of a new year is meant to signify. Sadly, for residents of Birmingham the new year merely sees the escalation of industrial action and the continuing Birmingham Labour bin dispute.
The bin dispute, now over 630 days and counting, since the first notice of industrial action was declared, has seen residents suffer months of strikes over the last two years – and often more missed collections than actual collections.
The latest chapter in Birmingham Labour’s bin saga came about when ‘secret payments’ to members of one union came to light causing first one and then a second union to go on strike demanding similar payments. Sadly as is often the case in Birmingham, residents have been left trying to piece together what has happened from snippets in the press. The Labour administration never produce any public reports nor did they brief opposition councillors about the payments that were made, prior to them appearing in the papers, and claims have been made that only the Labour Leader was aware from the administration itself.