Luas drivers call for more strikes after talks collapse
The public faces more transport misery after Luas drivers announced four more days of strike action.
Drivers have claimed that Transdev, the company that operates the tram service, walked out on talks at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) on Monday.
It happened after they reduced their pay claim from 53pc over five years, to 27pc in the same period.
A spokesperson for Transdev told the Herald that the company had already said that pay claims of 1pc to 3pc a year, with increased productivity, would be the norm. What the drivers are looking for is closer to 6pc, she said.
Siptu, the union representing the tram drivers, announced further strikes to take place on Sunday, April 3, and Monday, April 4, as well as Wednesday and Thursday, April 23 and 24.
It served notice of the action on the company at around 1pm yesterday, with the threat of an all-out strike now looming large.
Previously planned strike action for St Patrick's Day and the Easter bank holiday weekend - which will hit 1916 commemorations - are also still in place, the union said. Drivers represent the largest group making a pay claim, with 170 members.
Three more groups - 17 traffic supervisors, 36 ticket checkers and nine of their supervisors - have agreed to continue talking with the company at the WRC.
The union has previously accused the company of trying to "divide and conquer" the workers. In a statement, Transdev said that they were "extremely disappointed" with Siptu and the tram drivers.
"Transdev is willing to talk with the driver grade in the WRC, but have stated that those talks will only be meaningful if the pay claim is modified to a reasonable point," said Gerry Madden, managing director of the company.
"The public, Luas customers and business are the real losers here. The public will have no tram service for St Patrick's Day, no tram service for the Easter weekend and now no tram service for two weekends in April," he added.
Kieran Mulvey, director general of the WRC, said that there was still time resolve the issue and to avoid all-out strikes.
Siptu have said that drivers have been left with no options.