A disagreement between bin men and bosses has led to three refuse collectors being suspended.
A source connected to one of the refuse collectors told the Examiner three bin men were suspended on Monday for not clocking off at the depot.
Kirklees Unison branch secretary Paul Holmes confirmed the issue and claimed the council was reneging on decades of working practice and hitting collection rounds at the same time, explaining: “There are some rounds that can’t be done in the time allocated, it’s a fact.
“So what has been happening is that some lads have been starting their round from the first collection point, so for example they’ll get to a place early, say Honley, in their own vehicle then get 10 streets of bins together ready for the wagon that has been collected from Vine Street.
“This happens in every council all over the country, it speeds up collection times.
“When they finish at the end of their shift they get dropped back off where their car is. They’re not finishing early or being dropped off at home.
“But because the rounds aren’t being finished – because they’re too big – then these lads have been pulled in.
“They’ve been told they’re sweeping the streets now, which isn’t their job so they won’t accept it, so they’ve been suspended.
“If they do what the council asks it delays the collections, it wastes time and the rounds will take longer for all staff.”
He said agency staff had been drafted in to cover rounds before the suspension because the workload couldn’t be done during the normal collection days.
The union hopes the three workers suspended can be reinstated as quickly as possible.
A spokesman for Kirklees Council confirmed there was an issue, saying: “A small number of bin collection staff have been refusing to meet the terms of their employment over a number of weeks.
“There is a standard process for this type of action which managers are following.
“There will be no impact on collections as there is already cover in place.”
It comes after a wildcat strike saw a small number of staff walk out in November, which meant around 4,000 bins in the Holme and Colne valleys went unemptied.
It was in 2015 that Kirklees altered collections, so they take place between Monday and Thursday.
Fridays are set aside to finish rounds where bins went uncollected and carry out maintenance, but another source said Fridays were becoming busier because the rounds are unachievable in four days.
They also questioned agency spend, saying on one day recently 20 agency workers were needed to get the rounds done.