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Unions set for payout in Birmingham strike

Birmingham City Council’s bitter refuse strike may be near its end after the cabinet voted to pay thousands of pounds to striking workers.

The decision needs to be confirmed at another cabinet meeting due on Thursday.

A report for a cabinet meeting last week said agreement with the Unite and Unison trade unions would see the withdrawal of all litigation and industrial disputes.

Under the proposed settlement, the council would pay £3,000 each to workers involved in an employment tribunal claim and £500 to all those who were members of either union as of 14 December 2018.

The dispute is over payments made to members of the GMB union who did not participate in a strike in 2017.

Birmingham said these were compensation awards for the GMB being omitted from the talks that settled that dispute, while Unite and Unison said they were improper rewards for not striking.

Unite assistant general secretary Howard Beckett said: “The heads of settlement is a real breakthrough in negotiations.

“For the first time, there is a deal on the table which meets Unite members’ expectations. It is now imperative that Birmingham council’s cabinet signs up to the deal.”

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