A BINMAN dad of two says he faces a £5,000 a year pay cut if he wants to carry on working with the service.
The refuse collector, who has worked 15 years on the bins, writes anonymously on the Unite trade union website.
And he says he and his workmates hate seeing rubbish pile up in the street, too.
The binman says he faces a £5,000 a year pay cut if he wants to carry on working with the service.
The alternative, he claims, is an uncertain and probably temporary alternative job in another cash-strapped council department such as parks or housing. The council claims the jobs on offer are as secure as any in the organisation.
“I’ve been working for Birmingham’s refuse service – or the ‘bins’ as me and my mates call it – for over 15 years now,” says.
“I say mates because that’s what my colleagues are. We’re a close-knit bunch doing a hard and dirty job serving the people of Birmingham.”
He says the crew picks up 100 bins an hour, taking bins from door to the wagon and back.
“It can be mucky and difficult at times, but we take pride in the vital service we provide,” he says, adding that replacing the essential safety role at the back of the wagon, with the driver using CCTV instead, will increase the risk to staff and the public.
In recent years, he says, the public sector pay freeze and a reduction in the numbers on the bin crew from five to three have placed extra pressure on binmen.
“I’ve got two young kids, a mortgage and bills to pay,” he adds. “My wife works, but it will be a struggle to make ends meet and see us cutting back on everything bar the essentials.
“If I’m going to struggle, I fear for my colleagues whose wage is the only income in their household.
“So, I hope you can put yourself in my shoes and understand why we’re taking strike action.
“We don’t want to see rubbish piling up in the streets or inconvenience to the people we serve. After all, the people inconvenienced are our friends, our families and our communities. We want to solve this dispute, but bosses need to hear our concerns.
“Until then we will continue to stand up for our livelihoods and the jobs we love to do.”