GLASGOW is facing industrial action over planned changes to bin collections and enforcement actions.

The council says the new plan is intended to improve Glasgow’s recycling rates and make the system more efficient but the union says it is unfairly putting more responsibility on drivers and workers.

A bin strike last summer led to piles of rubbish on city streets for days in the dispute over pay.

   Read hear how the Glasgow Times reported on cuts to the cleansing budget

The GMB union has staged a consultative ballot over the changes which the union says is expecting workers to carry out extra duties for no extra pay.

The result is understood to be in favour of taking industrial action, short of a strike, if no agreement is reached.

The changes to the bin collections include the removal of the purple glass bins from kerbside properties when the Scottish Government Deposit Return Scheme comes in.

There are also plans to split the blue bin into two collections, one for paper and card and another for plastics.

The plan is to change the blue bin service into a “twin stream recycling service”, with a fibre bin for mixed papers, card, and cardboard and a container bin for plastic bottles, pots, tubs, trays, film, cartons, metal food and drink containers.

If bins are “contaminated” with the wrong type of waste, they are not to be collected and stickers put on the bins.

Under the council’s code of practice, cleansing crews will be expected to lift the lid of the bin and check for unacceptable material and “provide communication to householders if unacceptable material has been presented within a bin”.

Workers will be expected to attach a tag to bins and, “if a householder is present at the time”, provide “verbal communication”.

They will then report to the bin lorry driver who is to record the incident on a digital tablet.

GMB said in some cases workers could be faced with angry residents if they don’t collect the bins.

Chris Mitchell, GMB cleansing convenor, said: “We do not have a problem with enforcement of the recycling policy but it shouldn’t be the responsibility of our workers to do it.”

Mr Mitchell said: “It is putting more responsibility on drivers to do this. They are expecting us to do someone else’s job."

He said when the purple bins are removed it is anticipated that people will start putting glass in the green bins, which in many cases are already overflowing because of three-weekly collections.

The union rep added: “It’s not going to work. It’s not efficiency, it’s more cuts.

“The teams are not being paid more to do this but will be expected to take flak.”

The council said the driver's role includes operating equipment attached to the vehicle.

A spokesperson for Glasgow City Council said: “The introduction of the Alloy system will make capturing data easier for our staff and improve communications with residents.

“Following the successful outcome of a Stage 3 grievance, we are now rolling the system out across our vehicles.

“Having quick and easy access to the information recorded on the Alloy tablets will help us run our services more effectively.”