Calls for all sides in Bus Éireann dispute to 'reflect'

An all-out strike is looming at the company

Calls for all sides in Bus Éireann dispute to 'reflect'

NBRU General-Secretary Dermot O'Leary and SIPTU's Greg Ennis speaking to the media outside the Work Place Relations Commission (WRC) in Dublin | Image:

Transport Minister Shane Ross has called on all sides in the Bus Éireann dispute to take time to reflect on the issues at hand.

It follows the collapse of talks yesterday at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) - which the minister has described as a 'disappointing' development.

Following the breakdown of the talks, Bus Éireann management said it is "clear at this stage is that the unions have no intention of reaching an agreement which will address the financial crisis" at the company.

Later today the CEO of the National Transport Authority (BTA) will brief the Government's Joint Transport Committee on the current financial situation at Bus Éireann.

On Monday, the company released a discussion document in which it said its financial situation is worsening, with losses for 2016 now estimated at €9.4m.

Unions have warned of immediate strike action if the company attempts to push ahead with €12m in payroll cuts by May.

While Bus Éireann management have insisted the company will be insolvent by May unless the cuts are introduced.

An all-out strike at the company was originally scheduled to begin last Monday, but was suspended to allow the talks to take place.

SIPTU organiser Willie Noone says the ball is in the minister's court.

"We would hope that the minister for transport would now actually sit up and grasp the seriousness of what's occurring and intervene - and put in a process which would ensure that a strike doesn't have to occur.

"If he doesn't, we believe that Bus Éireann will go ahead and give an implementation date.

"And when they do, chaos is going to then prevail".