SANTA ANA (CNS) - Formerly striking sanitation workers were expected to return to work today after ratifying deals that ended a weeklong walkoff that halted trash pick-up in Anaheim, Huntington Beach and surrounding cities.
Tentative deals were reached Thursday between Republic Services at Anaheim and Huntington Beach, and Teamsters Local 396 -- 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.
The Anaheim and Huntington Beach facilities service 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 holiday season, impacting both residential communities and businesses.
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.
About 400 workers for Republic Services from Teamsters Local 396 went on strike Dec. 9 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.''
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