Transport workers warn commuters ahead of 24 hour stoppage
Media release, 16 December 2017
Transport workers have announced that they will stop work for 24-hours from 12.01am on Monday the 29th of January. The move is the result of Sydney and NSW Trains management’s refusal to negotiate a fair and reasonable enterprise agreement with its workforce.
The work stoppage will begin at 12.01am, Monday January 29, and continue for 24 hours.
The Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) NSW Secretary, Alex Claassens, said workers wanted to give commuters as much notice as possible of the action so they can make alternate arrangements.
“We’re disappointed it’s had to come to this, but management and the NSW Government haven’t left us with any other options. We want to give commuters as much notice as possible ahead of this 24-hour work stoppage across Sydney and NSW Trains,” Mr Claassens said.
“Workers have been trying to negotiate a fair and reasonable enterprise agreement for well over six months now, but the NSW Government and Sydney and NSW Trains management have refused to bargain fairly – not just around pay, but around basic conditions that impact their safety and the safety of commuters.
“The terrible way management and the NSW Government are willing to treat its hard-working employees has been laid bare for everyone to see lately. All workers are asking for are fair working conditions and wages in return for the work they do.
“There’s never an ideal time to take this kind of action, but the reality is, we have to. The Transport Minister and management haven’t left us with any other choice. Workers can’t sit back and let their wages and conditions, and our transport system, be attacked any longer.
“We are confident that commuters will understand that the NSW Transport Minister and Sydney and NSW Trains management are ultimately responsible for this action. They could put a stop to this anytime, simply by coming back to the negotiating table with a fair agreement.
“With this much notice, we still hope that the Government and management take this opportunity to come to the table in the meantime to discuss a reasonable offer with workers so that we’re not forced into taking this action.
“Workers are being stretched to capacity trying to deliver the shambolic new timetable, and now on top of all of this they’re being told they can’t be guaranteed fair conditions or pay.
“Our members have made it very clear that they’ve had enough of being attacked by the NSW Transport Minister, and that it’s time the Government and management sit down with us and come to an agreement on a range of different working conditions and terms we need to secure.
The 24-hour stoppage follows the announcement of two other forms of action announced this week – the displaying of union and industrial materials and a ban on overtime.