Trash being cleared in Ghent, but talks ongoing

Summary

Talks between unions and directors at trash collection agency Ivago in Ghent are ongoing, but workers agreed to clear rubbish today and into the weekend

Bins overflowing

Trash collectors in Ghent, on strike since Monday, went back to work today and will work an extra shift on Saturday to try to clear away the rubbish that has built up. Some Ghent streets are filled with trash bags, and public bins are overflowing.

Restaurant owners were particularly concerned about the growing rubbish as it had become too much to keep inside and was piling up in the street. The heat, especially on Tuesday, as it rose to 35°C in Ghent, exacerbated the problem.

It was in fact the heat waves of the last few weeks that led to the strike among collectors working for Ivago. As many collectors also go on holiday in July and August, work pressure built to a boiling point.

While workers agreed to clear trash this weekend, they say that the problem is far from over and that talks with the city are ongoing. They want an adapted schedule during heat waves as well as more manpower in general.

Photo: Nicolas Maeterlinck/BELGA