Dublin Bus bosses and unions back at talks today as 48-hour strike postponed

Dublin Bus bosses and unions back at talks today as 48-hour strike postponed

Talks between unions and management at Dublin Bus will resume this morning.

Strike action planned for today and tomorrow has been called off after talks at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) yesterday.

Unions are seeking pay increases of 15%. An offer of 8.25% was rejected by their members.

The decision to suspend the strike was taken to allow talks to continue between the National Bus and Rail Union, Siptu, Unite and the Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA), and the management of the company.

The postponement was agreed as a "gesture of goodwill" following a request from the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC).

A Siptu negotiator said industrial relations mediators believe there is scope to make progress on the bitter pay dispute if discussions continue during the week.

"We agreed to suspend tomorrow and Wednesday only at the request of the WRC," the spokesman said.

Both sides will return for further talks at 10am.

Commuters and bus users have faced six days of transport disruption to date and another 13 days of stoppages had been threatened by drivers and their colleagues.

The strike threat which coincides with this Saturday's All-Ireland football final replay, remains.

Dublin Bus, which said the dispute has cost it €6m, has maintained that it is open to negotiations but that talks hinge on a Labour Court recommendation of an 8.25% pay rise.

Unions claimed the actual losses the company has suffered are about €3.5m and warned that the vast majority of staff have already rejected the first pay offer and they want talks to focus on an offer closer to their demands of a 15% salary hike.

Unions described the exploratory talks as productive and said there was enough common ground to resume when the strike threat has been lifted.

It is understood mediators in the WRC believe a deal could be reached between unions and management as the week goes on.

Buses had been due to be taken off the road at 9pm last night in advance of the latest 48-hour stoppages.


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