Bin workers and cleaners demand coronavirus bonus payment

Glasgow City Council employees are demonstrating in a bid for a coronavirus bonus payment to be brought forward.

Workers from refuse and cleansing services in Glasgow are calling for a bonus payment for their work during the coronavirus crisis.

City Council employees held a socially distanced demonstration outside its headquarters on Friday.

They want the Scottish Government and councils to recognise the efforts of low-paid frontline workers.

GMB Scotland members are campaigning for £2 an hour extra for every hour worked during lockdown.

The figure would increase the basic rate of pay for many local government workers by £85 a week.

The union is citing the Welsh government’s decision to award carers a £500 bonus, retailers such as Tesco who increased the basic rate of pay by 10 per cent for their staff, and more widely the decision of the French government to award health workers a €1500 bonus.

GMB Scotland convenor Chris Mitchell said: “The frontline response to the coronavirus crisis in Scottish local government has been largely delivered on the backs of the lowest paid in services like care, cleaners and refuse, many of whom earn below or just above £10 an hour.

“And while the magnificent public support we’ve received really boosted our morale as we worked through the lockdown, we are now looking for recognition from the employers and politicians who were quick to clap us then.

“Across the rest of the UK and Europe we’ve seen from employers and governments an increasing recognition of the sacrifices and selflessness shown by frontline workers during this pandemic, and all we are asking is for is that Scotland does the same.

“So after the applause our message is loud and clear to ministers and council leaders – do the right thing and pay up for our key workers.”

A Glasgow City Council spokesman said: “We were aware of the protest planned today by the GMB calling on the Scottish Government and COSLA for additional payment.”

The Scottish Government have been approached for comment.

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