London bus drivers concern their pay can be minimize by over £2,000 a yr, and plan to strike in a matter of days.
Almost 2,000 bus drivers are as a consequence of go on strike later this month over the wage cuts.
It comes as Transport for London confirmed that 47 London bus drivers have died after catching Covid-19 for the reason that begin of the pandemic.
Organised by the Unite commerce union, the 24-hour strikes will happen over three days from February 22-24.
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The placing drivers are employed by three bus corporations owned by French multinational RATP Group. They function routes in south, west and north-west London beneath contracts with TfL.
RATP was approached for remark however couldn’t reply in time. The corporate operates 100 bus routes in London, and it’s not but clear how companies can be affected by the strike.
A TfL spokesperson mentioned: “We urge RATP and Unite the Union to speak via the problems and to attempt to resolve them as quickly as doable.”
In accordance with the commerce union, drivers employed by London United may have their wages minimize by a mean of £2,500 a yr.
It is because drivers would now not be paid throughout their breaks, or any time that isn’t spent behind the wheel of a bus, when they’re “logged in”.
The brand new contracts would additionally see drivers begin and finish their shifts at totally different bus stops, moderately than at bus garages. They’d be instructed by an app which bus cease to commute to for every shift.
A London United bus driver who works in West London, and who requested to talk anonymously, mentioned: “I may lose £2,000 a yr or extra. It’s legal what they’re attempting to do. It’s disgusting.
“Shedding that a lot cash would change every thing for me. I must do time beyond regulation to earn a residing. It’s completely loopy.
“There’s no thought for the worker and every thing is about making revenue.
“And so they haven’t been participating with the union, though they are going to say they’re. And they’ll in all probability say it’s ‘not a great time to go on strike’.”
One other south west London bus driver added: “Drivers are already working lengthy hours and getting fatigued. This can have an effect on individuals’s security.
“And issues like drug and alcohol checks are taken on the bus garages, these gained’t occur if drivers are beginning their shifts at totally different bus stops.”
Drivers employed by one other of the operators, High quality Line, will take strike motion on February 22 and 23.
Unite mentioned the High quality Line drivers earn £2.50 an hour lower than drivers at RATP’s different two corporations, and had been provided a 0.5 per cent pay rise – equal to 7 pence per hour.
Drivers on the third firm, London Sovereign – which operates routes in North West London – will strike solely on February 22.
Their employees have been provided a pay enhance of 0.75 per cent, which is nicely under what has been provided by different operators, Unite mentioned.
One other bus driver from east London mentioned his employer, Tower Transit, had provided workers a 2.5 per cent rise for 2 consecutive years.
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