Commuter chaos looms over bus drivers pay row

first_imgFacebook Print Linkedin Twitter NewsLocal NewsCommuter chaos looms over bus drivers pay rowBy admin – January 11, 2013 587 WhatsAppcenter_img Previous article€1.5 maritime museum for FoynesNext articleDevelopers fined and ordered to complete works admin Email BUS Éireann drivers have voted in favour of industrial action from this Sunday, January 13 due to proposed cost-saving measures which are expected to take effect from that date. According to the National Bus and Rail Union, over 90 per cent of drivers voted in favour of the action, which will affect all of the company’s routes in Limerick city and county. Dermot Healy, a Limerick bus driver and member of the NBRU National Executive told Limerick Post: “On December 14, Bus Éireann issued a letter to all staff about the implementation of a number of cost-saving measures which will impact on the earnings of drivers and other staff members.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up The payments they have targeted are those that affect drivers who work shifts, weekends and unsociable hours. These cuts will mean that their pay will be down by €100 to €120 a week; they’re not prepared to lose that kind of money in these times. Drivers haven’t had a pay increase in five years, and now they have to put up with this.”Mr Healy believes that Bus Éireann management failed to thoroughly discuss the issues with staff and said that management felt that negotiations meant telling staff ‘accept these measures or else’.He stated that if the company goes ahead with implementing the measures “the likelihood is that drivers will not operate the vehicles under these conditions”.A statement released by Bus Éireann said that “threatened industrial action by trade unions would be counter-productive for customers, staff and the company”.“The company, which needs to make savings of €9 million this year, outlined the proposed cost-saving measures which include: the reduction of overtime rates from 1.5 times to 1.25 times normal pay; a reduction in shift, premium and rota payments and an increase in working hours for clerical and executive staff from 36 to 39 hours.“As it is imperative that the company make the required savings and we have no option but to implement changes to employees’ terms and conditions from January 13. It is regrettable that these steps have to be taken, however they are necessary in order to protect basic pay and jobs.The statement went on to claim that in December trade unions had rejected a request “to avail of a hearing in the Labour Court on the company’s cost recovery plan, which is required to get Bus Éireann back to profitability”.The company also urged trade unions to “act responsibly” and provide sufficient notice of any industrial action so that customers could be informed of any possible disruption to services. Advertisementlast_img read more