Cleansing drivers have voted to take industrial action over a dispute about new technology in bin lorries.

GMB said members voted 95% in favour of taking action short of a strike unless a resolution can be found.

The issue concerns drivers being expected to use new digital tablets to record information about collections.

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The union said it is additional responsibility and not part of the job description, while the council said it is simply a new method of recording information, which will improve communication.

The action could involve an overtime ban which union leaders say would have an impact on bin collections as there is a reliance on staff working extra hours to maintain service levels.

Chris Mitchell, GMB Glasgow convenor said: “The ball is in the council’s court. If they want to talk and negotiate to come up with a solution we are willing.

“We hope they can come back to us with a solution. We need to come to a compromise.

“This is new IT equipment. Drivers are already under pressure delivering the service.”

Glasgow Times:

He said an additional responsibility payment is a possible solution to recognise the role or appoint a chargehand in the vehicle who could take on the role of recording information and allow the driver to focus on handling the vehicle.

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A spokesperson for Glasgow City Council said: “It is disappointing that the GMB have chosen to ballot this small group of employees as this issue has already been comprehensively reviewed and considered through our grievance procedures.

“It was concluded the use of the devices is in keeping with the role staff currently undertake and that they already paid appropriately for this work.”

The council said staff have always been required to record issues in relation to their work, but new technology gives the ability to move on from filling in paper forms manually.”

The spokesperson added: “Introducing easy-to-use tablets can help us run our services more effectively and address the problems that come with using paper forms.

“The new devices allow issues, such as a missed bin collection or the presence of rats, to be recorded at the push of a button and that helps us deal with problems proactively.

“All drivers have been fully trained and all health and safety issues fully addressed as part of the implementation process.”