Sussex

Brighton and Hove bins dispute strike suspended

Rubbish on the streets of Brighton
Image caption Rubbish piled up on the streets of Brighton and Hove during strikes last summer

A strike by refuse workers in Brighton and Hove on Thursday has been called off to allow further talks between union leaders and the city council.

A strike on Tuesday has also been suspended, but strike action is still planned for 3 October. The GMB union said a work-to-rule would remain.

Refuse and recycling truck drivers walked out earlier this month over pay, staff grading and responsibility.

The city council said it was pleased strike action had been suspended.

The union is claiming people at the council are doing equivalent jobs to its members, but being paid more.

It also said the authority had failed to "consult meaningfully" over new working practices and long-standing issues over round allocation and distribution.

'Equal pay compliant'

GMB representative Mark Turner said the union was planning to hold more talks with the council next Tuesday.

In a statement, Brighton and Hove City Council said it was looking at a "full service redesign to ensure we meet the needs of the city and to resolve work-to-rule".

It added: "We cannot favour one group of workers over another and increasing allowances for one group of staff would require us to increase it for many others at great cost to the council's overall pay bill.

"The agreement we reached with our trade unions and staff last year was to better ensure we were equal pay compliant."

A series of strikes last summer led to waste piling up in the streets.

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