Date Released: 19 February 2013
SIPTU school bus drivers employed by Bus Éireann in the Galway area will withdraw their labour on Friday, 22nd February, in response to a long running campaign by management to undermine the workers’ pay and conditions.
SIPTU Transport Sector Organiser, Willie Noone, said: “The union sent notice of industrial action by the drivers to the company a month ago. This followed workers voting overwhelmingly to take industrial action to protect their conditions of employment which have been undermined by their employer.
“During the past two years management at the company has been cutting hours of work and pay without agreement. Management has also refused to properly engage with established industrial relations processes despite numerous meetings and referrals to the Labour Relations Commission, Labour Court and Independent assessors’ decisions.”
A meeting between the drivers and management is scheduled for Wednesday, 20th February.
Willie Noone said: “A withdrawal of services will occur on Friday unless there is a full resolution of the dispute. The drivers are very annoyed that they may have to inconvenience school going children and their parents or guardians, but they have been left with no alternative.”
He added: “The drivers want it known that they have tried every avenue open to them to resolve the issues in dispute, however, delaying and frustrating tactics by the company has made it impossible to resolve them. The drivers will not be found wanting in trying to avoid a dispute but in circumstances where the company continues to reduce their hours and pay they are prepared to defend their conditions of employment.
Further industrial action by SIPTU school bus drivers employed by Bus Éireann in the Galway area is scheduled for Friday, 1st March, Thursday, 7th March and Friday, 8th March.