Councillors back Translink workers ahead of industrial action over pay
At a Full Council Meeting on Wednesday, November 22, Foyleside People Before Profit District Councillor Shaun Harkin proposed that Council write to Translink to express ‘frustration at the failure to offer public transport workers a pay rise’.
He said it was ‘very concerning’ that transport workers right across the North have voted to take industrial action on December 1, and ‘perhaps will take more in the lead up to the Christmas holidays’.
“Our public transport network’s very important,” Colr. Harkin said. “I’ve talked to a lot of workers and they don’t want to take this action, but they feel they have been forced into it.
“These are workers we depend on, they epitomise ‘essential workers’ and are being offered a zero per cent rise in the middle of a continuing cost of living crisis.
“I wonder what Translink and the Department for Infrastructure thought would happen when this was the offer. I think the disruption this strike will cause is entirely their responsibility, as well as the Secretary of State for refusing to put proper budgets in place.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Christopher Jackson said workers’ pay was a ‘pressing issue’ and the lack of a pay rise was ‘completely disgraceful in the current climate’.
SDLP Councillor Martin Reilly said the party supported industrial action.
“Right across the public sector, we see people taking action and demanding fair pay for the work they’re doing, and this Council has stood with them on the picket line,” he said.
Local Democracy Reporter