We will discuss this draft agreement during our meeting scheduled for Thursday 6th February 2020, Large Conference Room, Stretton Way at 6.30 A.M.

4 February 2020

For some time now, The GMB and colleagues from Unite have been in discussions with management to try and resolve outstanding issues & concerns raised by our members in the waste services on the Task and Finish agreement, One of the main issues for our members and myself was 'forced overtime'.

Management wanted our members to complete their rounds and in some cases help other teams out that fell behind due to unforeseen circumstances which could then force members to work overtime, some members did not want to work overtime as this is optional, the council cannot force our members to work over 36 hours and once their 36 contractual hours of working is complete then our members have the right to finish work and not be disciplined or have any sanctions held against them.

During earlier meetings with management, it was put forward to the TU's that staff who work in the waste service could work up to 4 hours overtime per month if requested to by their line manager, straight away I informed management and HR that the GMB could not agree to this proposal and we want it removing from any new agreement, I can now confirm that this has been removed.

I have been made aware from our GMB Steward in this service 'Mike Newcomb', that GMB members have again raised concerns around the 'help out arrangements' I have written to the head of service and made him aware of this, The GMB will discuss this in more detail with management at our next meeting.

Please see below the latest agreement and soon the GMB along with Unite will arrange to meet up with our members to discuss this.

Update, We will discuss this draft agreement during our meeting scheduled for Thursday 6th February 2020, Large Conference Room, Stretton Way at 6.30 A.M.

This agreement is made between:
Knowsley Council (‘the Employer’)
UNISON, GMB and UNITE trade unions (‘the Joint Trade unions’)
Together ‘the Parties’ hereby enter into this Agreement.


  1. The Joint Trade Unions are the recognised trade unions entitled to conduct collective bargaining on behalf of employees employed by the Employer;

  1. The Parties enter into this Collective Agreement in accordance with S.178 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992;

  1. This agreement embodies the working arrangements and employment conditions into the employment contracts of affected staff and those so affected will be advised of this when the agreement becomes operative.
    This agreement applies to all Knowsley Council employees employed within the Waste Management Service.
    This agreement does not apply to any Knowsley Council employees employed in any other Council Service.
    The operation of a ‘task and finish’ system for collection of household waste is commonplace in the Waste Management Industry. ‘Task and finish’ is a flexible working pattern whereby the organisation of work is based on completing a specified task but reflects the sometimes unpredictable nature of waste collection.
    Through collective bargaining and constructive engagement, the parties have agreed a shared commitment to continue operating a ‘task a finish’ working arrangement in the Waste Management Service.
    The working arrangement allows for:-

  • Continuation of a standard 36-hour contracted working week;

  • Flexible hours of working on each day of the week (Monday – Friday) to ensure completion of allocated waste collection rounds;

  • Although typical working hours will be 7.5 hours (Monday to Thursday) and 6 hours (Friday), daily working hours may exceed these hours. However normal weekly hours of work are not expected to exceed 36 hours.

  • While each team will be responsible for completing their own waste collection round, there may be occasions where they are required to assist a neighbouring team who have suffered a delay of 1-hour or more (for example, a vehicle breakdown, significant traffic congestion, severe weather conditions, a delay at the Waste Transfer Station or a delayed start to the working day due to an absence in the team).  In such circumstances, the Operational Management team will be responsible for managing and co-ordinating the necessary support arrangements and it is not anticipated that the team offering ‘assistance’ will exceed their normal weekly hours of work;

  • In response to unforeseen events that disrupt the provision of waste collection services (as described above) there may be a requirement, recognising the principle of flexibility that this agreement is based upon, for overtime working. This will be kept to a minimum and where practicably possible, will be carried out by staff who have volunteered to undertake overtime working.

  • In any event, overtime working will be monitored by the Waste Management Service operational management team, and details of overtime worked will be shared with the relevant trade unions every quarter to demonstrate the expectation that overtime working will be an infrequent requirement;

  • Operatives are expected to work in accordance with all health and safety system requirements and to ensure they comply with the requirements of the British Domestic Drivers Hours Regulations and the Working Time Regulations 1998;

  • Although waste operatives are required to ‘book on’ at Stretton Way depot each morning at 6.30 AM, they are permitted to ‘book off’ with their Team Leader (without returning to the depot) provided that their waste collection round for the day has been completed in full (and where necessary, they have assisted a neighbouring team); and

  • The operation of this agreement (including the availability of volunteers) will be reviewed after 6-months and thereafter annually.
    All employees within the scope of this agreement will receive a copy of the signed collective agreement which will form part of their contract of employment with the Council, the terms of which will apply until otherwise notified.
    The effective date for implementation of the revised ‘Task and Finish’ arrangement is 2nd March 2020.

GMB North West & Irish Region