Liverpool

Liverpool street cleaners strike: Visitors 'should take litter home'

Bins in Liverpool
Image caption There are currently overflowing bins in Liverpool city centre where visitors are being asked to take their rubbish home

Visitors to Liverpool city centre are being asked to take their rubbish home with them - as a strike involving street cleaners takes hold.

City Central BID, which represents 630 businesses, has asked shoppers to help after a strike following a dispute between staff and contractor Amey.

The company is also separately in dispute with the city's refuse collectors over wages and conditions.

Amey said it is "committed to reaching a resolution."

"We have offered union members pay increases over and above the nationally agreed rate and we are extremely disappointed that GMB has taken the decision to escalate industrial action to a full strike, despite the fact meaningful discussions were still taking place," said a company spokeswoman.

"Our priority remains to provide a high quality, best value service to Liverpool and we have contingency plans to bring additional staff to the city.

"We are working with the city council to determine when we deploy them."

Speedy resolution

Jeff Keight, of union GMB, told the BBC: "It's certainly not all about pay and conditions.

"The company have shown us they want to make 40-60 redundancies in street cleansing and we as a union will contest the redundancies."

He said the union asked for more talks with the company this week, but they said no.

The workers had not had a pay rise for four years, he added, and they only wanted 3.2% which was "negotiable."

On its website, Liverpool City Council said it regrets that "some elements of its environmental services" are affected, including highways, street cleansing, some grounds maintenance and household waste collections.

Household waste collections are currently three working days behind.

The council is urging both sides to find a speedy resolution.

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