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Council workers to strike over changes to working hours

The row centres on plans for household waste to be collected from 6am until 10pm.

Angus Council: Workers to strike.
Angus Council: Workers to strike.

Council workers in Angus are to go on strike over a dispute about changes to working hours.

The row centres on plans for household waste to be collected from 6am until 10pm, as of April. It means 140 workers will be required to move to a day shift/back shift work pattern.

Unite has raised concerns about operating the service safely and effectively, as well as a potential negative impact on work-life balance.

George Ramsay, Unite regional industrial officer, said: "If Angus Council management had bothered to take our concerns seriously they would have been left in little doubt about the folly of their proposals, and we would not be in this situation of their own making.

"However, Unite would once again like to state that we are willing to re-engage with management in order to find a resolution to this dispute.

"If Angus Council refuse to do so, then the public should know that industrial action is imminent, and with it significant disruption to the service, through the intransigence of management."

Members of the union voted in favour of industrial action by 92% on a turnout of 87.2%.

An Angus Council spokesman said: "We note the outcome of today's ballot and are committed to continued discussions with our staff and their trade union representatives in an effort to resolve this dispute.

"The changes we are introducing will achieve savings of £160,000 per year and remove approximately £2m worth of vehicles from our fleet.

"These are savings we must make but, by doing it this way, we can ensure there is no reduction in jobs or to the kerbside collections we make.

"Like other councils, we are facing extreme and unprecedented financial challenges.

"Making savings this way means we can deliver our council priorities and still protect vital frontline services."

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