Friday, 22 June 2012

Solidarity with London bus workers taking strike action today

From 3.00 BST today many of London’s bus workers on many of the major routes in and around London will be taking industrial action for the first tiem in many years. This is all over the failure of TFL and the bus companies to agree a Olympic bonus for the bus workers. Unite the union who is the major union in the London bus workers will be supporting its members across the capital today. I will be lending my supporta and solidarity with the workers who deserve a decent bonus for being made to work harder and longer hours during the Olympic games.
Bus workers from 17 companies will go-ahead with a 24-hour strike in London despite an injunction, a union said.
The Arriva, Metroline and Go Ahead firms applied for the court injunction, which was granted, and their workers have been told not to strike on Friday.
But union members at the other firms plan to walk out in a row over a £500 bonus for working during the Olympics.

Unite had called for the bonus to be paid to its20,000 members, in line with extra pay deals agreed with train companies.

The failure by the bus companies to negotiate seriously and their desire to run to the courts will only heighten tensions”
End Quote Peter Kavanagh Unite
The three companies who went to court account for 15-20% of London's bus routes, providing services in north-west and south London.

Unite's regional secretary for London, Peter Kavanagh, said: "Bus workers across the vast majority of London's bus network will be on strike tomorrow.
"This comes despite an injunction which was given without any proper explanation.
"Granting an injunction in the face of a massive vote for strike action is an affront to democracy. We will appeal [against] this anti-democratic decision."

• London United
• London Sovereign
• Stagecoach East
• Stagecoach Rainham
• Stagecoach Selkent
• Arriva North
• Arriva South
• First Capital
• First Centre West
• London Central
• Abellio West
• Abellio South
• Metrobus
• Docklands
• Blue Triangle
• CT Plus
• Arriva Southern Counties

Talks between the bus operators and the union aimed at halting Friday's planned strike action broke down at the conciliation service Acas earlier.
On Wednesday the mayor announced that the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) had offered £8.3m in a bid to avert action.
Unite said it "cautiously welcomed" the offer. It blamed the failure of the talks at Acas on TfL's and bus operators' refusal to negotiate a meaningful settlement.
The £8.3m is in addition to £91m the ODA gave to TfL to cover the additional costs of running extra services during the Olympics, including bonus pay deals agreed with rail workers.
Deals have been announced giving workers at Heathrow Express £700, Network Rail £500, Docklands Light Railway £900, London Overground £600 and London Underground at least £850, Unite said.
Unite estimates it would cost £14m to provide a £500 bonus for every bus driver.

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