Negotiations between the union and the services of the Republic on the garbage strike continue

Chula Vista and the Clairemont district are overflowing with garbage. This is because sanitation workers are on strike day 12.

Over 200 Republic Services employees across the county are fighting for a fair contract.

Their union, Teamsters Local 542, sat at the bargaining table with Republic Services on Friday, but they failed to come to an agreement.

“To me it was very disrespectful, it was kind of a slap in the face,” said Dohney Castillo, Republic Services driver for five years.

“It’s not moving anywhere, but hey, we’re going to be here until we have a fair deal on the table that we think is fair for us,” he said.

MATTHEW BOWLER

At this apartment complex off East Palomar in Otay Ranch, garbage spills into the parking lot as Teamsters Local 542 strikes over stalled contract negotiations with Republic Services on December 27, 2021.

Since workers went on strike on December 17, residents and business owners who depend on garbage collection have not been lucky.

Some neighborhoods are starting to see their garbage piling up.

“Garbage is overflowing,” said Ricardo Ochoa, a resident of Chula Vista, who is also a lawyer representing local unions.

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Matthew Bowler

Ricardo Ochoa (right) and Noah King (left), a father and son, residents of Chula Vista, marched on the picket line with Teamsters Local 542 to show their support for the strike against Republic Services in Otay Mesa, December 27, 2021.

He said the garbage that overflows from his building is unsanitary. But despite his frustration, he and his son held signs and marched in solidarity with sanitation workers on Monday morning.

“They are putting their jobs at risk when they should be home with their families and the rain is coming later today. It’s always something you want to show your support for, ”he said.

Driver Castillo said Republic Services enlisted outside help while contract negotiations continued.

“Right now they are bringing in other workers from other parts of the country, from other states,” he said.

In a statement to clients, Republic Services said they were ready to return to the negotiating table on Tuesday.

“Republic Services is ready to return to the negotiating table tomorrow to continue negotiations for a fair contract for all. Unfortunately, the union’s wage demands are not in line with current local market rates. Although the average salaries of drivers in the Republic are already very competitive. with wages paid by other carriers in the San Diego area, the union is demanding significant increases that simply do not reflect our local market. With the help of our Blue Crew emergency drivers, we have worked hard to restore regular collection service to many neighborhoods and continue to make strides in serving our customers. Republic is grateful to our customers for their patience and understanding. -Relations with the media of the services of the Republic

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Teamsters Union Local # 542 is distributing flyers to residents of Chula Vista on December 27, 2021.

Meanwhile, residents who encountered overflowing trash were given the option to take their trash to the landfill.

Castillo said it was unacceptable.

“They pay the city for the services of the Republic to collect their waste. They should not have to bring the waste to the landfill themselves,” he said.

Union representatives distributed flyers to residents on their way to the landfill on Monday.

They asked the inhabitants to put pressure on the city of Chula Vista so that the services of the Republic are responsible.

Republic Services prepares to return to the bargaining table on Tuesday as strike continues