By Amanda MacMillan
BIN workers in West Lothian have gone on strike in a dispute over pay.
A total of 93 staff at Waste Services and Street Cleansing went on strike yesterday (fri) leaving local residents without any refuse collection.
The GMB Union has also formally advised the council that this day of action will be followed by an indefinite work to rule.
A West Lothian Council spokesman said: “We would like to apologise to our customers affected by this industrial action.“Forty-six members of staff from Waste Services and Street Cleansing were balloted and we understand that the other staff involved are supporting the action.
“We have also been advised by the GMB Union that the staff involved will also carry out an indefinite work to rule.
“We are very disappointed that the GMB Union has decided to call this action, which will undoubtedly cause inconvenience to our residents.”
“All councils are under increasing pressure to meet the legal requirement of ensuring their pay structure is non-discriminatory.
“We will continue to discuss the issues with the GMB Union.”
Contingency plans were in place to minimise the impact and provide as full a service.
Plans are also in place to catch up with any backlog of bin collections caused by the strike.
The council spokesman added: “We will provide extra resources over the coming week and aim to clear the backlog within a week.
“As there will be a work to rule we are urging householders to present their bins for collection at the kerbside with the handles facing the road and the lid firmly shut.
“Bins should be put out as normal and left out until we collect them –- this may take a few days and there is no need to contact us.”
But the council has warned that collections may be later than normal.
Businesses have also been advised to take their trade waste to Deans Community Recycling Centre, located at Nairn Road, Livingston.