VIC BUS PROTEST CONTINUES; UNION ACTION THIS FRIDAY 13TH

By: Fabian Cotter


UNION-LED BUS INDUSTRIAL ACTION against CDC Victoria is again in place for this Friday, 13 July, 2018, after negotiations reached an impasse on what the Transport Workers Union (Vic/Tas Branch) calls, “the current sub-standard CDC offer,” it’s reported recently.

VIC BUS PROTEST CONTINUES; UNION ACTION THIS FRIDAY 13TH
Despite earlier protests, the TWU (Vic/Tas) and CDC Victoria have not yet reached a mutual agreement.

It’s been resolved that ongoing industrial action led by the TWU will go ahead this Friday 13th (tomorrow) between 2pm and 6pm, following Tuesday’s (10 July) 24-hour picket of various CDC depots around Victoria, which attracted around 600 participants, it’s reported.

CDC says this new Friday action will impact all CDC Victoria-run bus services across the western and eastern suburbs of Melbourne in Ballarat and Geelong. Bus route 400, running from Sunshine, will operate as per normal Friday timetable.

In a joint statement released on 10 July by John Berger, TWU VIC/TAS Branch secretary and TWU national vice-president, and TWU VIC/TAS bus organisers Mike McNess, Bob Lean and Imran Malik, it explains the organisation’s position as such:

"The buses stopped today [Tuesday] because CDC TWU members decided to fight for a fair and reasonable wage rise – a fair share of the fare.

"While the rest of Victoria was sleeping, these staunch members gathered in the freezing cold on picket lines from 4:40am at CDC depots in Wyndham, Oakleigh, Geelong and Ballarat. Many are still out there right now.

"They would rather be working in the comfort of a heated bus or home with their family than out in the elements and inconveniencing some commuters.

"But there comes a time when you have to look after yourself – and these TWU members have drawn a line in the sand.

"The fact they have gathered in great numbers to picket today tells you how serious this issue is, how insulted they were by the company’s latest sub-standard wage offer and how determined they are to dig in. So get behind their fight for the Victorian Bus Industry Agreement.

"We thank all of those almost 600 CDC members who walked out today – and their families and supporters – without your strength, without your determination and without your solidarity this fight would not be possible.

"We also welcome all of those new members who have signed up from CDC in recent days – you have seen the union’s hard-line stance and the unwavering solidarity among TWU members and received the message loud and clear that the TWU is going to stick up for you. We have your back.

 Related article: Wage negotiations between drivers and CDC Victoria stall</
Related article: Wage negotiations between drivers and CDC Victoria stall

"There are further actions planned for this dispute.

"We must stand together and will show CDC and the rest of the Victorian Bus Industry that you are worth more than the current sub-standard CDC offer.

"And never forget that this is not just a fight between CDC members and the rich multinational, but a fight for the 2018 Bus Industry Agreement.

CDC DISAPPOINTED

CDC Victoria CEO Nicholas Yap said: "We are disappointed that despite our application to the Fair Work Commission for mediation, the TWU are proceeding with more industrial action on Friday afternoon.

"We continue to appeal to the TWU to progress discussions instead of impacting commuters. We believe that our offer, which includes a range of industry-leading benefits, is fair and this demonstrates our support for our drivers.

"We apologise to all our passengers for yet another day of significant inconvenience and have certainly improved our internal processes to communicate the impacts to our customers from our last experience."

CDC Victoria advises passengers that no services will run between 2pm and 6pm on Friday, 13 July, 2018.

If some bus services are able to run, CDC Victoria says it will provide information on its website.

CDC Victoria strongly encourages all passengers to seek alternate travel arrangements.

A full list of affected routes and the latest information is available on www.cdcvictoria.com.au.

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