Grass cutting appears to have been restarted after the lockdown.
By Democrat reporter
Trade union official Sean Davenport started a turf war on social media last night when he welcomed the return of grass cutting on verges and open spaces in West Dunbartonshire.
Sean, who is a rep for UNISON, wrote: “Fantastic to see the council grass cutters back out and about. Don’t envy the task the guys have ahead given how long the grass has got, but I’m sure they’ll do a great job and help get the place looking a lot better again.”
But Sharon McIver wasn’t one bit pleased. She replied: “Well, Nicola Sturgeon just announced yesterday that next week she would look at outdoor jobs getting started up again. So grass cutting really shouldn’t be getting done at the moment. I know it needs done but that’s not the point… That’s the council ignoring the government.”
Sean attempted to take the heat out of things – “I think when she refers to outdoor work it’s more focused on things like the construction industry in the private sector.
“I don’t think the council are ignoring the government either as they’ll be in regular dialogue through COSLA [Convention of Scottish Local Authorities] about what services are being reintroduced and so on.”
But Sharon was adamant: “Well, the message is still stay at home unless it’s an essential job…. Just saying… I for one want people to be doing the right thing… I’m shielding till mid July and am terrified of what it’s going to be like if people just keep doing as they please.”
She added: “The message has always been if you can safely work, which means maintaining social distancing etiquette and wear PPE then you are safe to work outdoors.”
Stephen Neeson chipped in: “I work in Greenspace and I know the guys are putting these protocols into effect when working.”
Still, however Sharon wasn’t content with what was happening. She said: “Stephen Neeson, the point is outdoor work has not been cleared by the government.
“I am just trying to point out that people/employers are doing their own thing. Which is not correct in the circumstances we are in.”
She added: “The council have been very careful on this and I can assure you risk assessments and safe systems of work have been put in place before anyone goes out to work.”
Caz Barr asked: “What risk is there to council staff cutting the grass? They don’t come into contact with anyone on those ride along grass cutters.
“My relative was told to get back to work even though she’s diabetic and has heart disease and she’s working inside with other staff.”
Sharon McIver said: “I’m making a point [here]. This is not an essential job… As, a lot aren’t… All these people are humans too, doesn’t mean just cos your employer tells you to go back that you go, especially if it’s non essential work.”
Cllr Jonathan McColl, who appears to be missing from his post as council leader, refused to clear the matter up for readers of The Democrat, but Duncan McKerracher stated: “The grass has been getting cut in the cemeteries for weeks due to safety issues