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UNITE strike action to severely impact Council services next week

18 March 2022
Derry City and Strabane District Council has advised that it has received formal notification from UNITE the Union, in relation to strike action from Monday, 21 March 2022 to Sunday, 27 March 2022 inclusive. 
 
A spokesperson for the Council said it fully respects the right of staff to take industrial action following an official ballet and confirmed that it expects there to be considerable disruption to a range number of services such as refuse collection, street cleansing, recycling centres and a number of other services during the week of 21 March.
 
The spokesperson explained that the level of impact will be variable across all services and could change as the week progresses.
 
Council envisages that Refuse collections across the Council will be severely impacted and that routine Blue bin and Brown bin collection services will not operate on the week of 21 March. It is therefore advised that members of the public do not put their bins out for collection during this period. It is hoped Black Bin services will commence as normal on 28 March with the Blue and Brown bin collections recommencing the following week 04 April.
 
Council also envisages that the strike action will also have an impact on Recycling Centres with many centres not being able to operate during this period and some being closed.
 
Street Cleansing services are also anticipated to be severely impacted. Litter bins are likely not to be emptied as per normal operation.  Members of the public are asked to be aware of this.
 
It is our understanding that some Council owned public parks and play areas may also be impacted and that some may need to remain closed during this period.
 
In terms of leisure facilities, Council envisages that the strike action will have variable impact across all leisure centres and facilities in the Council area next week. It is anticipated that swimming pools at all leisure sites will be closed with no access to swimming lessons and school swimming sessions. Where possible, gym classes and main hall activities will continue however the level of services will vary and there is a possibility that there could be reduced opening hours at some centres.  Pitch bookings will also be significantly impacted.
 
It is hoped that planned essential maintenance works at the Foyle Arena will go ahead. This work will mean there will be no hot water for a number of days so dry changing facilities only, will be available. Leisure centre members and users are urged to contact their leisure centre directly for regular updates.
 
Council has engaged with the Union this week to successfully secure an exemption for essential services such as burials at the Cemeteries and for the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages.
 
The public are advised that the civic offices at Strand Road Derry and Derry Road Strabane should remain open to the public and Council can be contacted directly at 028 71 253253.  Council envisages that its Museums and Visitor Services at the Guildhall and Tower Museum, Derry and Alley Theatre, Strabane should also be able to operate as normal.
 
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council Alderman Graham Warke urged the public to be understanding and patient at this time.
 
He advised that daily updates in relation to services will be communicated next week on the Council’s website at https://www.derrystrabane.com/Strike-Action  and also on Council social media platforms.