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Argyll and Bute Council has abandoned plans to charge elderly and disabled people for bin men and women lending a helping hand.
Among many savings measures proposed to save money in the 2020/21 council budget was the introduction of a £100 per year charge for ‘assisted bin pull-outs’.
The aim was to raise an extra £26,000 for council funds.
The proposal has now been scrapped over fears the equality rights of the elderly and disabled could be infringed by the charge.
Disabled Lochgilphead resident Mark Carter raised the matter with the Argyllshire Advertiser and we carried a front page story on the issue in January.
An Argyll and Bute spokesperson said: ‘We have to look at all options for making savings.
‘At the same time though, we want to take every opportunity to protect vulnerable residents wherever possible. We have therefore withdrawn an option to introduce savings for bin uplifts.’
As news broke the proposed bin uplift charge had been scrapped, Mid Argyll councillor Sandy Taylor said: ‘If included, this measure would have discriminated against the elderly and those with a disability.
‘It simply should not have reached this stage of the budget process.
‘This is ironic, in that it is a service provided for the elderly and disabled; people who can’t manage to put their bin out, even a wheelie bin.’
‘I, and many others that I have been in contact with about this merciless attempted charge on our most vulnerable, think this [proposal] has been despicable,’ said Mark Carter.
‘It should never have been considered in the first place. In most cases that I have observed it would not have saved anything.’