SIPTU members in two employment grades in Dublin Bus have overwhelmingly rejected a Labour Court recommendation concerning pay and conditions at the public transport company in a ballot counted this afternoon in Liberty Hall, Dublin.
Members in the Traffic Grade, which includes bus drivers, voted by 96% to 4% to reject the recommendation, while workers in the Clerical Grade rejected it by 95% to 5%.
SIPTU members in the remaining grades in the company are currently being balloted on the recommendation, with the result of these votes to be announced next week.
SIPTU organiser, John Murphy, said: “Worker representatives in the Clerical and Traffic Grades have reported that their members expressed anger at the proposals presented by the Labour Court.
“These workers have not had a pay increase since 2008.
“They deferred a pay increase of 6% due in 2009 and since then have also implemented several measures that have increased productivity and reduced costs for the company.
“The agreement of the workers to introduce such cost reduction and productivity measures was crucial to the stabilisation Dublin Bus’s financial situation and the company’s return to profitability in 2014.
“Our members believe that the Labour Court recommendation does not take into account the sacrifices made by them during this period.
“They also expressed concerns over other aspects of the recommendation relating to pensions and future productivity.
“SIPTU organisers will meet with the Section Committees of both grades early next week to review the ballot result and decide our next steps.
“Our members are willing to conduct a campaign of industrial action in order to force a just resolution to this dispute.
“We will also engage with other trade unions at the company on the campaign.
“However, industrial action can be avoided if management enters into negotiations aimed at achieving an acceptable resolution.”
Update 5.29pm: NBRU members at Dublin Bus have also rejected the Labour Court recommendation, by a margin of 95% against.
General Secretary Dermot O'Leary said: “Our members, by emphatically rejecting this recommendation, have strongly demonstrated their anger at the level of the award compared to that which was awarded to other workers in the same transport sector, whilst our claim for pay parity with tram drivers remains front and centre as part of our goal towards significantly improving the terms and conditions of bus workers, we had hoped that the Labour Court would have assisted towards realising this objective by at least recommending the same quantum which was awarded to resolve the recent Transdev dispute"
"The archaic method of combining basic pay, shift pay, overtime and allowances into a weekly take home needs to cease as a component of any future settlement of the issues surrounding pay at Dublin Bus, the idea that workers should have to potentially suffer restrictions on what is already a meagre pension is simply not tenable, there is a palpable anger among bus workers after suffering two cost-cutting plans and no pay award in eight years, we will now consult with our fellow trade unionists with a view to coordinating a united response in order to get Dublin Bus and its paymasters in Government to understand that Bus Workers will no longer tolerate being left behind in relation to long overdue pay improvements, we will now move to immediately ballot our members for Industrial Action."