Members of Unite, employed by Veolia on commercial waste contracts in Cheshire and Merseyside, have suspended strike action that was due to begin tomorrow (Friday 21 December) after the company made an improved offer.

The dispute was a result of the workforce, who are employed to work five shifts in seven days, being unpaid if they undertook a sixth shift.

Lengthy negotiations

Following lengthy negotiations between Unite and Veolia’s management yesterday (Wednesday 19 December), the company made a new proposal that when workers undertook a sixth shift they will receive a combination of a payment and time off in lieu as compensation.

After consultation the workforce accepted Veolia’s proposals and the strikes, which would have caused considerable disruption to businesses in the area including household names such as McDonalds, Boots, Wetherspoons and Asda, were suspended pending further national negotiations in the new year.

Workforce solidarity

Unite regional officer Steven Gerrard said: “This is an excellent result for Unite members who through their solidarity have ended the rank unfairness of undertaking work and not being paid for it.

“Businesses in Cheshire and Merseyside will also be relieved that the threat of strike action which would have caused considerable disruption to their waste collections has been lifted.

“Unite had said from the outset that once Veolia was prepared to enter into meaningful negotiations this dispute could be resolved and this proved to be the case.

“It is now hoped that as this dispute has been resolved, Unite can develop far better industrial relations at Veolia.”

The other strikes scheduled for Christmas Eve (24 December), Tuesday 4 and Monday 7 January 2019 and a series of overtime bans have also been called off.


Notes to editors:

Cheshire businesses face Christmas rubbish headache as Veolia workers vote for strike action

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

Email: [email protected]

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