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‘Plan B’ to stop Edinburgh’s bin’s overflowing during Festival – council leader

Edinburgh Council is drawing up a ‘plan B’ with the city’s refuse workers set to strike (Andrew Milligan/PA)
Edinburgh Council is drawing up a ‘plan B’ with the city’s refuse workers set to strike (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Edinburgh Council is working on a “plan B” in case refuse workers go on strike during the city’s busy Festival period later this month.

Council leader Cammy Day said he hopes the industrial dispute can be resolved but officials are drawing up plans to stop Edinburgh’s bins overflowing if strikes do take place.

Waste and recycling workers represented by the Unite union are due to strike later this month in a dispute over a “derisory” 2% pay offer.

The days of strike action are due to begin on August 18 and end on August 30, with around 250 workers including street cleaners expected to take part.

Speaking on the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland radio programme, Mr Day called on the Scottish Government to step in and help councils fund a pay rise.

He said: “Edinburgh is the lowest-funded council in Scotland and we need the Government to step up to the mark and help stop that.

“So already our teams are planning for if the strike happens, how we will manage it.

“So we won’t have the city strewn with litter and overflowing bins, we will have a plan to resolve that. But ultimately I don’t want the strike to happen.”

He continued: “As soon as the ballot was announced a few weeks back, our office has been working on a plan B for that.”

Cosla leaders met on Friday to discuss the prospect of strike action around Scotland by members of three trade unions who have rejected a 2% pay offer.

The council leaders decided they needed more information and another meeting is due later this week.

Julia Amour, director of Festivals Edinburgh, also spoke to the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme.

She said tickets sales had initially been slow but are now picking up.

“It was slower than it would have normally been pre-pandemic but there’s been a good uptick in the last couple of weeks,” she said.