herald

Wednesday 28 September 2016

Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann drivers to strike for four days in May

Dublin Bus
Dublin Bus

Industrial action by drivers at Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann is expected to last four days in May, SIPTU has announced this afternoon.

The announcement follows a refusal by the management of both Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann to meet with workers to discuss their major concerns over plans to privatise 10pc of bus routes.

At this morning's SIPTU meeting, it was decided that the work stoppages by drivers will occur on Friday, May 1, Saturday May 2, Friday, May 15 and Saturday, May 16.

Owen Reidy, SIPTU Utilities and Construction Division Organiser, said that it was "outrageous that having taken a moderate approach to prevent industrial action by seeking direct talks with both bus companies, SIPTU has been met with such intransigence".

Read more: Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann vote in 'overwhelming' majority to strike on May 1  

"We have had a meeting with the Department of Transport, which was useful and workmanlike, but until we meet with both bus companies it is impossible to make an assessment on the prospects of making progress in allying our members' concerns. The Minister for Transport, Paschal Donohoe, needs to get his house in order and resolve what is a dysfunctional position taken by these companies."

“For more than nine months SIPTU has been seeking to have six key points, with serious consequences resulting from this proposed privatisation addressed," he added.

"There has been little progress in having these legitimate concerns tackled. We regret that management has chosen not to seize the opportunity provided by SIPTU to address these issues and left our members with no option but to embark on a campaign of industrial action.”

Minister Donohoe reacted to the announcement with a fresh appeal to unions to call off their planned industrial action, asking them to accept his assurances about work and conditions.

"I believe that [the strikes] should not happen.  I believe these strikes will cause too much difficulty to the companies and the people who rely on those services," he said.

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