Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of MRW, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Council apology ends Birmingham dispute

Birmingham City Council has retracted a claim it made about trade unions as part of the final settlement of its acrimonious refuse collection strikes.

The latest strike ended at a cost to the council of £5.84m last month. Both sides then agreed to negotiate a final settlement.

A joint statement by the council and the Unite and Unison trade unions said all industrial action and litigation between them had been “concluded by way of mutually acceptable settlement terms”.

It said: “[Birmingham council] further retracts commentary that was made in a recent cabinet report wherein it was incorrectly said that Unite had declared a willingness to take industrial action even if a court declared the action to be unlawful. BCC apologises for this commentary.”

Last winter’s dispute concerned payments made to members of the GMB union after an earlier dispute in 2017.

The agreed statement said: “[Birmingham council] confirms that at no stage in 2017 did either Unite or Unison attempt to prevent the council from discussing any intended role changes with the GMB.

“While the council maintains that any payment made to GMB refuse workers, arising from the dispute in 2017, was made in good faith and following internal and external legal advice, the council accepts that such payments had unintended consequences and is committed to working with all of the unions to ensure that a cohesive and positive working environment exists going forward.”

The settlement included the formation of a joint services improvement board, including council officers, trade union representatives and councillors, “to ensure future disagreements can be resolved transparently and by discussion”.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.