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09 August 2006

Private Companies Refuse Refuse Accord

From a notification issued by Haringey Council:

Rubbish collection industrial action
Friday 4 August 2006

Staff from refuse collection contractor, Accord, are still taking industrial action. The dispute is a matter for the contractor to resolve with its staff. The company is still contractually obliged to provide waste collection services and has assured us that they will continue to operate their contingency plans. We apologise to residents for any inconvenience that this action is causing but would like to reassure residents that we are closely monitoring the situation to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum.

Rubbish is being left to rot in Haringey's streets after refuse collectors walked out, over a week ago, in protest about their working arrangements.

A Haringey resident interviewed on LBC News Radio in the small hours of this morning explained that rubbish collections are still occurring from outside business premises while large dumps of vermin and disease infested rubbish are rotting away, in the height of summer and children's school holidays, on council estates and in other residential areas throughout the borough.

One more time with feeling, "The dispute is a matter for the contractor to resolve with its staff". So claims Haringey Council. Yet, if The Antagonist isn't much mistaken, it is Haringey Council to whom residents of Haringey pay their Council Taxes and it is Haringey Council whom Haringey Council Tax payers should rightly expect to organise the collection of their refuse.

Haringey residents have tried a number of methods to work around the dispute, including asking the council to provide vehicles that they can use to collect and dump the amassed stockpiles of rubbish. Thus far, residents efforts have been thwarted by the council who refuse to provide any assistance in resolving an issue it believes is the sole problem of the company contracted to fufill these obligations.

"The dispute is a matter for the contractor to resolve with its staff"

In fact, the dispute is a matter for the residents of Haringey to resolve with its council, the body proactively refusing to help residents to help themselves and further compounding what is already an environmental and health and safety crisis.

With the application of a little thought, this presents no great problem and can easily be resolved. The resolution to Haringey residents' refuse collection problems is simply that they need cut out the middle-men who have no interest in meeting their demands, namely the private firm, Accord, and the Council who accepts no responsibility for outsourcing refuse collection to that private firm which has no other interest than its own private profit.

Haringey Council spends £13M a year on refuse collection alone. This figure rises to nearer £50M, if similar and related services such as environmental health and recreation are factored into the equation.

"In order to globalise resistance, you must first localise it"

If the residents of Haringey refused to pay the portions of their council tax levied for the purposes of refuse collection and disposal, and all associated environmental services, choosing instead to use that funding to employ local borough workers, so sick to the back teeth of being held hostage by private companies at every turn, and that are sufficiently motivated to do something constructive about the problem that won't go away unless each and every one of us actively does our bit to make it go away, the problems they are experiencing with refuse collection would vanish almost instantly.

With between £13 and £50M in the kitty, a few hired vehicles, complete with HGV drivers, labourers and anyone fit, healthy and pissed-off enough to dig themselves out of the rat-infested pits in which their council has left them to fester, all at the behest of nothing more than the private profit of faceless shareholders with whom they would otherwise have no connection, and Haringey residents need never again worry about finding themselves living in piles of their own rat-infested rubbish.

Furthermore, once the need is eliminated to meet projected private profit demands of shareholders in an organisation over which residents can affect no useful change, not only would the current refuse collection predicament be resolved but, without doubt, borough residents would also be left with significant sums of cash with which they can then set about rebuilding their community that, like all others that once existed, has all but been eradicated by the introduction of limitless private profit at the infinite expense of public services and public well-being.

If not you, who? If not now, when?


Anonymous said...

Rubbish in Haringay is piling up! Something needs to be done. Bins are overflowing, we have no space to put any more rubish in front of our house.

The Antagonist said...

Meanwhile, the council still maintains, "Our primary concern, as always, is residents and the service they receive."

Maybe if the amassed piles of resident's rotting, rat-infested, rubbish was piling up outside the many Haringey Council offices dotted around the borough, something might change?