dublin bus nbru union workers’ routes
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A bus workers’ union has warned of “major industrial unrest” across the public transport system if privatisation is extended to more routes.
The National Bus and Rail Union was responding to the announcement that Dublin Bus has lost control of 24 bus routes serving suburbs around the city to private operator Go-Ahead.
The results of a tendering competition for 10 per cent of Dublin Bus routes were announced by the National Transport Authority (NTA) on Thursday.
NBRU general secretary Dermot O’Leary said: “Despite the fact that that Dublin Bus (with the vital support of our members) has been hitting all the stringent performance related targets set down by the NTA, this Government has decided to pump significant amounts of taxpayers money into the bank accounts of multinational operators.”
Mr O’Leary accepted that an agreement was struck in 2015, following a NBRU-led two day dispute, which included the initiation of High Court proceedings against the then minister challenging the privatisation of publicly-owned bus services.
He said it was nonetheless disappointing that Dublin Bus had been unsuccessful in the “so-called tendering process”.
It appeared, Mr O’Leary said, that the NTA and the Department of Transport had decided “that workers’ rights are up for grabs and can be used, Dutch auction style, to help towards bidding for state contracts, the price of labour should not be used to win such contracts”.
“The NBRU will focus our attention on ensuring that our affected members on the privatised routes will not be forced to move from their current workplace, we will also move to recruit those new entrants that will work for the private operator to ensure that they will be properly represented and work with them towards achieving similar terms and conditions as those workers we represent in the State-owned companies,” Mr O’Leary said.
“This Tory-lite Government, disgracefully supported by the rag bag Independent Alliance, would be wise to restrict this foray into the privatisation of publicly-owned transport services to the routes identified, moving beyond will not only be vehemently opposed by the NBRU, but will inevitably lead to major industrial unrest across the public transport system.”
The 23 routes to be privatised are all serving outer suburbs of the greater Dublin area and none go into the city centre.
Among the routes in question are:
17 Rialto to Blackrock
17a Blanchardstown Centre to Kilbarrack
18 Palmerstown(Old Lucan Road)to Sandymount
33a Swords to Balbriggan
33b Swords to Portrane
45a Dún Laoghaire (Rail Station)to Ballywaltrim
59 Dún Laoghaire to Mackintosh Park
63 Dún Laoghaire to Kilternan
75 The Square Tallaght to Dún Laoghaire
76 Chapelizod to Tallaght (The Square)