Harlow’s refuse workers are celebrating after contractor Veolia took swift action to address bullying allegations and health and safety concerns at the Mead Park depot.
UNISON submitted a collective grievance against the company last week after workers joined together to take action, with UNISON reps taking the problems to Harlow Council on Monday.
Since then, a number of issues around local management and inadequate facilities have been addressed and Veolia has promised to resolve the remaining health and safety concerns by the end of the week.
UNISON regional organiser Caroline Hennessy said: “Mead Park is like a different depot today. Workers once again feel respected and can go about their jobs free from fear of bullying and with decent facilities to take their well-earned breaks.
“We still need to keep a close eye on the situation but we’d like to thank Veolia for quickly addressing the problems UNISON members raised and Harlow Council for supporting them.
“But above all this is down to the refuse workers themselves who realised that the best way to take on bullying and improve their jobs was by banding together and changing things collectively through their trade union.
Harlow Council leader Councillor Mark Ingall said, “I am grateful that when the union was made aware of the issues being reported at Veolia that they contacted the Council who took immediate action.
“Veolia has responded positively to UNISON and the Council’s suggestions.
“It is important now to give the management some space to conduct enquiries into what went wrong.”