Tuesday 19 September 2017

Bus drivers' strike could leave pupils stranded

Bus Éireann acting CEO Ray Hernan arrives at Leinster House yesterday to appear before the Dáil’s Transport Committee Photo: Tom Burke
Bus Éireann acting CEO Ray Hernan arrives at Leinster House yesterday to appear before the Dáil’s Transport Committee Photo: Tom Burke

Anne-Marie Walsh

More than 115,000 children around the country face being stranded as the prospect of a school bus strike looms.

The risk of strike action comes after Siptu accused Bus Éireann of threatening drivers' jobs. Siptu is warning it may ballot 280 drivers for industrial action after a meeting over a 21pc pay claim at the Workplace Relations Commission.

Yesterday, acting chief executive Ray Hernan said Bus Éireann could go out of business before the end of the year with the loss of 2,600 jobs.

Meanwhile, Transport Minister Shane Ross has been accused of being a "spectator" in the saga.

Bus Éireann already faces the prospect of an all-out strike over cuts, which unions claim will cut earnings by up to 30pc.

School bus drivers traditionally have not participated in industrial action at Bus Éireann, as their wages are funded by the Department of Education.

But Siptu said management negotiators warned school bus drivers' jobs may be on the line if unions representing other workers resist cuts.

Irish Independent

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