SOME families will have to wait a fortnight for their bins to be emptied as a result of refuse collectors joining school staff and civil servants in tomorrow’s (Thursday’s) public sector walkout.
Members of UNISON, GMB, Unite, NUT and FBU will be participating in co-ordinated national strike action and there will be pickets outside Harrow Civic Centre in Station Road, Harrow, and the Household Waste and Recycling Centre in Forward Drive, Wealdstone.
Harrow Council leader Councillor David Perry (Labour) said: “We recognise the unions’ right to strike, although we also recognise the impact this will have on local residents.
“Over the next four years we will be working with trade unions to overcome the impossible situation the Tory government has put us in, with over £70million’s worth of cuts being imposed on the council and local residents.”
The council said “a significant number” of schools and colleges will be closed or partially tomorrow.
There will be no domestic bin collection for 18,000 households whose bins will only be collected on the next scheduled pick-up day which is Thursday July 17 for brown bins, and Thursday July 24 for blue and the green or grey bins.
Some other council services are operating a reduced schedule and employees are cancelling non-urgent services, appointments and visits on the day.
Opposition leader Councillor Susan Hall (Conservative) said: “The only thing this strike will achieve is the disruption of services that Harrow residents expect and pay for, and interrupting things like bin collections even for a day can cause total chaos.
“As the administration, Mr Perry and his colleagues should be taking the lead in condemning this strike action and demanding that it’s called off – not backing it.”
Linda Perks, regional secretary for UNISON Greater London Region said:
“Council workers have kept on going in the face of four years of draconian Government cuts to keep local services in London running.
"They care for our elderly and our vulnerable, keep our streets clean and educate and look after our children.
"They deserve better treatment than they have had at the hands of this Government.
"Taking strike action is never easy but our members are sending a clear message to the Government that they have had enough. "