A weeklong trash pick-up strike affecting Anaheim, Huntington Beach and surrounding cities ended Thursday, with the union representing some 400 striking sanitation workers ratifying deals to return to work Friday.
The union had announced a tentative agreement between Republic Services at Anaheim and Huntington Beach and Teamsters Local 396 earlier Thursday — and Adan Alvarez of Local 396 confirmed to City News Service later Thursday that agreements had been ratified with both facilities.
Union members would be back to work starting Friday, Alvarez said.
“After several bargaining sessions with Republic Services, Teamsters Local 396 has now reached a tentative agreement with the company which includes a commitment to cease engaging in unfair labor practices and a fair contract for workers at Anaheim and Huntington Beach,” the union said earlier Thursday in a statement.
Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu welcomed the news.
“As Orange County’s largest city, restored service is essential for Anaheim’s residents, neighborhoods and businesses,” Sidhu said. “Our city stepped up to support a fair, reasonable contract and pushed for and saw critical service for our homes and businesses during negotiations.
“Our work on behalf of residents and everyone in our city means waste collection will get better each day as we go into the holidays.”
The Anaheim and Huntington Beach facilities serve other Orange County cities including Santa Ana, Garden Grove, Anaheim, Huntington Beach, Seal Beach, as well as major tourist attractions like Disneyland. The strike disrupted waste hauling during the Christmas season, impacting both residential communities and businesses.
The agreement also covers service for Brea, Chino Hills, Fullerton, Garden Grove, La Habra Heights, Placentia, Villa Park and Yorba Linda.
It will take some time for service to fully return to normal, according to Anaheim officials.
“Today (Thursday) we will continue to see limited but expanding service for scheduled pickup areas and priority sites. In coming days, we expect to see service start to normalize and get better each day into next week,” according to the Anaheim announcement.
That news came before the tentative deal was also announced with Huntington Beach — but Huntington Beach officials had earlier said they were optimistic a resolution could also be reached.
About 400 workers for Republic Services from Teamsters Local 396 went on strike last Thursday as they accused management of making “unilateral changes without bargaining and threatening reprisals against employees who participate in union activity,” according to a statement from the union.
The union’s contract expired Sept. 30 and the sanitation workers voted Nov. 23 to authorize a strike.
Republic Services issued this statement on Thursday:
“Republic Services is pleased that we were able to reach agreements for new contracts with the union that represents our Orange County employees. We take pride in providing all of our employees a total rewards package that includes competitive wages and comprehensive benefits.
“We look forward to resuming regular service in our communities as soon as tomorrow, and we are grateful to our municipal partners for their patience during this work stoppage. Among them, we appreciate the support and leadership of the city of Anaheim, which assisted in keeping the operation running and helped encourage a resolution.”