Residents of Chula Vista are worried about the accumulation of garbage in the city with the arrival of rain in the county due to a strike by garbage collectors working for Republic Services.
The company said they have not yet reached an agreement, due to employees' salary demands.
Meanwhile, Chula Vista residents said they were tired of seeing so much waste in their community and are concerned about the health hazards it could bring.
"And the rain came and it's worse," said Leticia Cardenas, an affected Chula Vista resident. "Well, it's about two weeks old and it's a little dangerous."
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The strike involves more than 300 garbage collectors from the Republic Services company, who are calling for improvements in wages, working conditions, and the garbage collection machinery they operate.
"These people from Republic Service should do something and stop the strike because it is affecting the community," said Ernesto Gonzales, an affected neighbor.
Republic Services sent NBC 7 the following statement on Tuesday:
"Republic Services is ready to return to the bargaining table today to continue negotiations for a contract that is fair for all. Unfortunately, the union’s wage demands are not in line with current local market rates. Although Republic drivers’ average wages are already highly competitive with wages paid by other haulers in the San Diego area, the union is demanding significant increases that simply do not reflect our local market. We take pride in providing all of our employees a total rewards package that includes competitive wages and comprehensive benefits. With the help of our Blue Crew relief drivers, we have worked hard to return regular collection service to many neighborhoods and continue to make progress in servicing our customers. Republic is grateful to our customers for their continued patience and understanding."
"The pandemic, the garbage, and then here as there are many apartments, there is a lot of garbage. And as Christmas just passed, people maybe throw away some food, and it's spoiling," Cardenas added.
As Republic Services and strikers continue negotiations, residents of the Camelot Apartments, located on 5th Avenue in Chula Vista, are wondering how long it will continue.
Republic Services reported that with the help of its "Blue Crew" drivers have returned regular pickup service in many neighborhoods.
Teamsters Local 542 sent NBC 7 the following statement saying, “The Union is committed in the mediation process and is ready and willing to go as long as it takes.”