24 March 2017
By Bryan Smyth
Cork’s only Workers Party policitian – Cork City Cllr. Ted Tynan – has called for “massive support” for striking Bus Éireann workers
“The Workers Party has expressed its solidarity with Bus Eireann Workers who are now on strike following the decision of company management to proceed unilaterally to cut pay and conditions.” said Cllr Tynan
Cllr. Tynan has said that it is vital for all workers that the Bus Eireann employees win this dispute as the outcome will set the trend on pay and conditions for the foreseeable future.
The Cork city Cllr said: “If the Bus Eireann workers are successful it will send a message to employers and this Thatcherite government that organised workers who stand up for their rights will not be pushed around.”
Cllr. Tynan has called on drivers who work for private operators not to engage in strike breaking, saying a victory for the Bus Éireann workers could act as an example to them that by joining a Trade Union they too can enjoy decent pay and working conditions.
He has urged members of the public to boycott any attempt by the company management or the National Transport Authority to break the strike by bringing in private bus operators on Bus Éireann routes.
Cllr. Tynan also demanded that the government introduce a Sectoral Employment Order for all bus workers to bring an end to this race to the bottom on pay.
Labour Local Area Rep Peter Horgan has urged the Cork public to support the bus drivers in their industrial dispute.
“While it is frustrating for commuters around Cork today I know that it is even more frustrating for the drivers to have to take this action,” said Mr Horgan.
“This strike is the result of a Do Nothing Minister for Transport who is only concerned that his local
Bus runs rather than a comprehensive transport plan for the country. This is an attack on the wages and working conditions of bus drivers not just in Cork but around the State. Government must intervene this weekend as a matter of urgency.”
The Small Firms Association (SFA) has condemned strike. Patricia Callan, National SFA Director, commented: “Thousands of commuters all around the country will face severe difficulties in getting to and from work. In addition, the delays caused by the inevitable increase in traffic will be costly for all small businesses trying to get their goods to market throughout the country and to the ports/airports.”
Callan continued: “This strike is unjustifiable. Bus Eireann operates in a deregulated, competitive market and states that it is losing €50,000 each week and is facing insolvency. In order to survive, work practices will need to change and cost efficiencies gained. The threat by the NBRU of spillover action to Dublin Bus and Irish Rail is entirely reprehensible and must be stopped.”