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Luas strikes called off as drivers set to vote on improved pay deal

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Luas drivers are to vote on new pay recommendations

Luas drivers are to vote on new pay recommendations

Luas drivers are to vote on new pay recommendations

Luas strikes for this Thursday and Friday will be called off as drivers ballot on an improved pay rise of up to 18.3pc.

The thirteenth and fourteenth days of strikes at the light rail network were due to take place later this week.

But a Labour Court recommendation has been issued that could end the long-running dispute.

Siptu official Owen Reidy said the four-hour work stoppages planned for later this week will be called off, which is the "normal practice in matters like this".

The drivers previously rejected a proposal for a pay rise of 18pc in a deal that was brokered by Siptu and Transdev at the Workplace Relations Commission.

But the new deal is likely to be seen as much better. Although the pay increase between 15.6pc and 18.3pc - depending where the driver is on the pay scale - is similar, it is structured differently.

In the commission's deal they would have got an 8.2pc long-service increment after four years on the maximum of the scale.

The new deal includes a long service increment of 2.5pc after three years on the maximum of the scale, by September 2020.

It is understood this means drivers would get more of the pay increase at an earlier date.

The court's new recommendation also asks for considerably less productivity from staff.

Notably, an increase in their working time from nine to nine-and-a-half hours has been dropped in the Labour Court recommendation.

In addition, they are set to get back pay that Transdev docked by 10pc for participating in a work-to-rule. Any driver taken off the sick-pay scheme - because absences went above normal levels - will be paid arrears.

Payment

They would also get a €750 payment on acceptance of the deal, after forfeiting a €3,000 bonus for participating in industrial action.

A pay scale for new entrants that is 10pc lower than that for existing employees for the first three years will be reviewed within 18 months.

Siptu said it will meet the Drivers' Committee tomorrow morning to analyse the deal and it will conduct a secret ballot by Friday.

Drivers had been seeking a 23pc pay rise within the next three years while the tram company was only prepared to offer 13pc.