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Saturday 10 December 2011

Services back to normal following strike action


Cheshire East Council services are back to normal, following trade union strike action last Wednesday (November 30).

Waste collections were affected after the 24-hour industrial action but all other services were adequately staffed and services for adults, children and families ran smoothly.

Cheshire East Council had one of the highest turnout rates in the North West with only 25% of employees taking part in the strikes.

There were 111 exemptions and around 75% of the total workforce attended work as normal. Picket lines were present at several council buildings but demonstrations were peaceful.

Chief executive of Cheshire East Council, Erika Wenzel, said: “The day of industrial action naturally put a strain on services but we are pleased to report that despite this, services ran efficiently and complaints were kept to a minimum.

“I would like to thank all staff who attended work in what could have been difficult circumstances. Turning up for work meant that the Council was able to continue delivering services, particularly to those who are most vulnerable.”

However, a regular question that has been asked is “why did we not plan for the non-collection of waste?”

Although the day of action was publicised for some time it was impossible to know exactly how many staff would take industrial action and this made contingency planning very difficult.

The industrial action affected a large number of households across Cheshire East and that means it is impossible to catch up on the missed collections without disrupting many other residents within the Borough whose collections were scheduled for the subsequent days.

However, if Cheshire East Council is made aware of any residents that have very specific needs and are in severe difficulty, staff will do their very best to assist them.

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