Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport, Timmy Dooley TD, has again called on the Government to intervene in order to prevent an all-out strike at Bus Éireann on Sunday.
It was announced this afternoon that the largest union at Bus Éireann, the National Bus and Rail Union (NBRU), will press ahead with strike action beginning on Sunday.
“The result of this afternoon’s ballot by members of the NBRU could not have been more emphatic. An all-out strike by Bus Éireann workers will start this Sunday which will cause travel chaos throughout the country.
“This action has arisen after 11 long months of deliberations, negotiations and protracted discussion between management, the Labour Court and public transport workers. It is clear that an agreement or compromise will not be reached which makes the need for Government intervention all the greater.
“The threat of unilateral cuts to premium and overtime pay is what has angered workers and with no apparent hope of a breakthrough, Minister Leo Varadkar must now step-up and intervene to try and avert this strike.
“Minister Varadkar has been happy to stand by and allow the situation to deteriorate in recent weeks and months. Without Government intervention of some sort; hundreds of thousands of people who depend on public transport to get to school, college and work will be left high and dry on Sunday and into next week.
“While I acknowledge that Bus Éireann needs to make around €9 million in savings, these savings weigh too heavily on workers who earn on average €33,000 a year; they have families and mortgages and they are struggling.
“The Labour Court has stated that the very viability of the transport operator is under threat if something is not done.
“Does Minister Varadkar not realise the seriousness of the situation? How much longer will he wait before sitting up and taking notice?
“I am calling on the Minister to take responsibility here and act as an intermediary between both sides to avert travel chaos this weekend.”