A trade union representing Glasgow’s cleansing workers has raised concerns about the plan to scrap bin collections from back courts.

Yesterday, the Glasgow Times reported on the pilot scheme to put bin hubs on streets.

The move would mean workers don’t need to drag heavy bins through closes and up and down stairs.

READ HERE: How new Glasgow bins will work as they replace back court collections

The GMB has been in talks with the council about the proposals and has sought reassurances on a number of points.

Worries over jobs, pay and how the scheme will work have all been brought up with councillors in charge of the plans.

Chris Mitchell, GMB cleansing convenor said change was needed but it has to be done right.

He said: “There is a fear that the council is weaponising health and safety to make cuts.

“It means 43 posts will be redundant. We need a guarantee there won't be job losses.”

The union rep said there is an element in cleansing workers grading that recognises the physical aspect of the work and wants clarification there won’t be any attempt to downgrade workers as it is still work with a lot of manual handling.

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He said workers are also concerned the waste could pile up beside the hubs if they are full and wants clarification there will be enough resources for the increased frequency of collections and sufficient enforcement, particularly to ensure businesses do not abuse it and dump rubbish to avoid commercial waste charges.

Glasgow Times:

He added: “We agree we need to modernise cleansing in Glasgow but this a huge change and we need guarantees for residents and for the workers.”

The bin hubs will be trialled in a number of streets in Pollokshields, starting later next month.

Streets in Haghill and Anderston will then be included in the scheme.

If it is successful, then it will be rolled out across the city to the more than 70,000 tenement properties

Ruairi Kelly, Glasgow City Council convenor for neighbourhood services, said: “We need to make every pound go as far as it can and have made no secret of the resource implications of the planned changes.

“It is, though, just one of several considerations, alongside improving recycling rates and back courts, and responding to health and safety concerns.

“The cleansing workforce has raised working conditions over time and by not having to lift tens of thousands of bins through back courts every week we believe that, if the on-street trials are successful, their work environment will improve considerably.

“No-one will be made redundant as a result of the on-street bins proposals.

“The council has a commitment to no compulsory redundancies.

“In fact, 40 new permanent staff have been recently recruited to cleansing, reflecting its importance to Glaswegians and to the City Government.”