Cardiff Council worker strikes could continue through Christmas if pay rise demands are not met

A union leader is warning that Cardiff council strikes could last beyond Christmas if a deal is not reached within the coming weeks.

Cardiff Council workers have been on strike for more than two months but there is no sign of a resolution to the dispute.

Among the affected services is refuse collection, with the strike expected to continue until at least November 26.

The union says that the cost of living crisis and the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic have put a strain on council workers.

Simon Edwards is a bin collector and a member of the Unite union.

He says the council has shown its workers “disrespect.”

“Councils [elsewhere] in Wales and England as well had a Covid payment. We didn’t get it. There is no respect from the council.”

The relationship between the local authority and its workers has been strained for some time.

Now council workers are demanding a pay increase due to the rising cost of living.

The union wants all council workers to receive the UK living wage of £12 an hour, which was set by the Living Wage Foundation. Cardiff Council is a Living Wage employer.

Leigh Williams works for the Unite union in Wales. “Since that first initial meeting which was on October 18th, we’ve had little dialogue. We’re disappointed for our members in the council.”

At a subsequent meeting in October, council leader Huw Thomas said: “I have been very clear with Unite in terms of where we stand on a nationally negotiated pay deal, but also my desire to work with them and all recognised trade unions in this council to find a way through this dispute.”