Some green bins WILL be collected today before suspension kicks in, says Milton Keynes Council

But as soon as they're done, the service will grind to a halt

By Sally Murrer
Monday, 26th July 2021, 11:54 am
Updated Monday, 26th July 2021, 11:56 am

People who were due to have their bins collected on Thursday or Friday last week will still have a collection today, the council has announced.

And if the struggling Serco crews don't mange it today, they may even still collect tomorrow,

But once these bins are emptied, there will be no more collections for the foreseeable future and people are asked to put food waste in their black sacks instead. Garden waste should be taken to local household waste sites where possible.

Some bins may still be collected today

Black sack and recycling bag collections will continue as normal on a weekly basis.

The decision to suspend green bin collections was made late last week due to high numbers of staff shortages from contractors Serco.

As many as 28% of their workers are off ill or self-isolating with Covid due to the national 'pingdemic'.

An MK Council spokesman said: "Covid-19 continues to have a significant impact on us all. In Milton Keynes Covid-19 rates are high, with 255 new cases reported on a single day last week. Like many other councils and organisations we’re experiencing reduced staffing due to illness and isolation, as much as 28% in the waste team in recent days.

"Despite putting contingency measures into action to limit the pressure on services, losing high numbers of staff puts the continuity of essential services at risk. This is especially the case in areas where obtaining cover is already difficult, due to a national skills shortage of HGV drivers for instance.

"Therefore in order to prioritise residual black sack waste and recycling collections we have taken the difficult decision to suspend all food and garden waste collections in MK from Monday 26 July until further notice."

The spokesman added: "We appreciate this is an inconvenience to residents. We’re doing everything that we can, with the support of our partner Serco, to maintain essential services as far as possible in these extreme circumstances and we thank you for continuing to support our crews.

"We hope to have the food and garden waste services restarted quickly and we will provide regular updates, giving as much notice as possible when the service restarts.