RMT members for First Group name dates for pay dispute
The RMT members, working for First Group, voted 85% for strike action and 90% for action short of a strike, following the rejection of this year’s pay offer. The company proposal is self-funding – meaning it would have no cost impact on the company and ring-fences their profits.
It includes the loss of paid walking time, the removal of time to do a visual “walk round” check when taking a bus over mid-shift and the dilution of the sick pay benefits. This follows on from the removal of the final salary section of the pension scheme, already implemented despite fierce union objections.
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: “This massive mandate for action by RMT members on First Devon and Cornwall buses reflects their anger at the failure to come up with a serious pay offer and the attempt to bind up what is on the table with a whole load of strings to make it self-financing at the expense of the workforce.
“The fact that we have been forced to ballot and put this action on is solely down to the failure of the management side to understand the anger of their workforce. The company must take this situation seriously and get round the table with RMT to negotiate a settlement and the sooner those talks commence the better.
“Bus services and bus workers in the South West are under a series of attacks as the companies attempt to ramp up and protect profits at the expense of the staff and that situation cannot continue. ”
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