CHILDREN are not able to play in “disgraceful” backcourts where one family filmed a 10-strong mischief of rats running amok.

A tenants’ group said it has visited nearly 3000 homes in Govan and seen the same issue across the area.

Now local residents, GMB Scotland the Living Rent Tenants’ Union are organising to demand action from Glasgow City Council.

Today there will be a clean-up in the backcourts with rubbish gathered “as evidence” of the refuse problem.

And then GMB Scotland members - council cleansing staff - will hold a demonstration.

The group is calling for Glasgow City Council to bring in an enhanced cleansing service of backcourt teams.

However, the council says backcourts are an issue for owners or factor.

Rhea Wolfson, GMB Scotland Organiser said “With workers and residents united behind this campaign we hope Glasgow City Council will finally listen to our demands for a properly resourced refuse and cleansing service.

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“The restoration of the back court teams will restore some order and dignity to Govan’s back courts but long term, Glasgow needs urgent invest of an unprecedented scale to reverse the decline we can all see happening across the city.”

The group says backcourts across Govan have become unsanitary and hazardous due to reduced bin services, with rats and seagulls so rampant parents won’t risk their children playing out the back.

One family on Howat Street recently filmed a mischief of ten rats from their ground floor tenement.

In response, the residents and workers of Govan are demanding that Glasgow City Council bring in an enhanced cleansing service involving two four-strong backcourt teams.

These teams would be responsible for the cleansing of the entire backcourts rather than just the bin sets and they would also take away bulk uplift items.

This work was once done as part of the general cleansing service.

Bex Walker, a Living Rent member and Govan resident, said: “Our backcourt has been an ongoing disgrace.

“There is no way we would let our child play there.

“We’ve seen enormous rats regularly and the place is often strewn with rubbish.

“We support the bin workers rather than blame them.

“It’s time a decent service is resumed.”


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George Lavery, Living Rent Govan branch organiser, said: “We’ve door-knocked nearly 3000 homes in Greater Govan and the state of the backcourts, and street cleanliness more generally, is a major issue for residents.

“As a Tenants’ Union we can’t and won’t just accept residents and workers being exposed to health and safety risks.

“We’re asking local people to join us in collective action to resolve this issue.”

A council spokesman said: “We are currently investing £6.5m in 80,000 new, large wheelie bins that will eventually replace 50,000 old-style steel bins all across the city.

“Steel bins are small and often in poor condition and this can lead to the spread of litter and waste, which encourages vermin and creates health and safety issues.

“The bin replacement programme will help to ensure waste in contained far more effectively and ultimately lead to significant improvements in the conditions of bin courts.

“As part the replacement programme, we do undertake fresh start clear-ups of bin courts immediately ahead of the new bins being provided.

“Ultimately, however, the condition of a bin court is the responsibility of the owners or factor.”