Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport, Timmy Dooley TD, has called on the Government to clarify its position in relation to the current dispute between Bus Éireann management and its staff.
The company announced today that it will forge ahead with a range of cost-saving measures without the consent of unions.
Deputy Dooley commented: “I note with some concern that Bus Éireann management has decided to press ahead with wide ranging changes to work practices and conditions for workers without union consent.
“While I acknowledge that substantial savings have to be made within the company, I would have thought that engagement with unions to reach some kind of compromise would have been the preferred option.
“Is the policy of excluding unions and enforcing cost-saving measures the new path that is to be used by employers? We have seen the divide and conquer strategy used by Minister Brendan Howlin in dealing with the Croke Park II agreement. When this failed, we then saw the same Minister threaten public sector workers with across the board pay cuts unless they agreed to the unfair conditions contained in the proposals.
“It seems Bus Éireann has taken the lead from the Government and decided that the unilateral approach is the only way to achieve savings. If so, this is a very worrying development and may lead to increased industrial unrest and possibly very damaging strikes.
“We need clarity from the Minister for Transport about whether he endorses this approach by management at Bus Éireann and if so, what options have unions now to express their opinion on these cuts?