The Green Party Trade Union Group (GPTU) unequivocally supports members of Unite the union in Tower Transit buses, who are staging a 24 hour strike today. They are angry because a lack of consultation over roster changes which are leaving them out of pocket, as well as the non-payment of correct rest day working rates. It is the second stoppage in a dispute involving over 1,000 drivers, engineers and controllers at three depots across the Capital.
A previous 24 hour strike on Friday 26 August led to services operating out of the Atlas Road bus depot in Park Royal, the Westbourne Park bus garage and the Lea interchange bus depot being dramatically reduced with 28 bus routes affected. Talks broke down yesterday at the conciliation service Acas as the management refused to budge on basic things such as a single collective bargaining forum for Unite members and trade union representation for individual members.
Kieron Merrett, the Green Party’s Trade Union Liaison Officer said:
“This strike could have been avoided had the management made genuine but basic changes to unfair practices at Tower Transit. If workers were properly consulted in changes to their pay and conditions, Unite members would not have needed to take industrial action.
“The Green Party fully supports workers in dispute to improve their terms and conditions . We are calling for legislative changes to enable more workers to get organised in Trade Unions like the Unite members in Tower Transit, including opposing the Tories’ Trade Union Act. The best way to improve the position of working people is to enable them to get organised.”