Spat at and traffic cones thrown - Doncaster tip workers reveal scale of abuse during Covid restrictions

Workers employed at tips in Doncaster and South Yorkshire have been verbally abused, spat at and even had traffic cones thrown at them.

Thursday, 25th March 2021, 6:00 am
Hatfield Waste Recycling Centre

The South Yorkshire Waste Board (SYWB) released a statement condemning abuse of workers which has escalated due to coronavirus restrictions in place at sites across the region.

A breakdown of abuse per site in each location was not given, but in Doncaster, there have been concrete reports of verbal abuse and tip goers not adhering to social distancing measures.

Incidents across the region include spitting at staff, verbal abuse, refusing to adhere to social distancing rules, ignoring ‘No Waiting’ signs, throwing cones at staff, and residents even surrounding other cars in the queue, shaking them and not letting them move.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

The situation at tips across South Yorkshire has escalated with many councils employing measures to stop cars queuing up on residential roads waiting to access sites.

Security personnel have been hired to try and manage the situation at many sites across the region.

Because of national Covid-19 restrictions and social distancing requirements, sites cannot accommodate as many vehicles as usual and staff are unable to help unload them.

In response to the growing number of people trying to access the household waste recycling centres, Doncaster Council brought forward the extended summer opening hours by two weeks to try and ease demand.

A spokesman for the South Yorkshire Waste Partnership, said: “We want to thank people for continuing to recycle and dispose of waste responsibly during these difficult times.

“However, we are disappointed that our staff, who have been working hard throughout the pandemic and in adverse weather conditions have, on occasions, been subjected to abusivebehaviour.

“We know that HWRC facilities are very much appreciated by members of the public and we are appealing to people to be patient and to treat our staff with the respect they deserve.”

*

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.