I worked for Waste for just under 5 years .... and even factoring in the excellent benefits, I made nowhere near 6 figures! Most WM shops are non-union, & drill that point into your head upon your hiring. Mine was no exception.
I made great money though -- enough that it surprised alot of people. One day I was driving a 15 year old beater .. then a 9 year old beater .. then a brand new '07 with all the bells & whistles. My buddies picked up on that pretty quick.
But I'll also tell you that there's more than meets the eye when it comes to working for a large company like that. They can get away with alot more than the average company. It was common knowledge in my shop that if you got hurt, you'd better sweep it under the rug, or your job would be on the line. This would be drilled into you during DAILY safety meetings. The pressure from corporate was so great, that shops would come up with their own solutions to meet the demands. Did you watch undercover boss on NBC? I about peed myself laughing at that show -- so fake, it was sickening. We constantly had bosses spying on us while on route & writing us up for violations ... while under the same breath, they'd say pick up the pace, or get out! On top of all that, you had to deal with a city full of liberal douchebags with the biggest egos & worst attitudes in the entire continent of North America. I wouldn't go back to that if they offered me $49/hr!! It's just not worth it!