Arriva North West bus drivers in strike vote
Arriva risking North West bus travel disruption with subpar pay offer
Nearly 2,000 Arriva bus drivers across Liverpool, Manchester and the north west of England are being balloted for strike action in a dispute over pay.
If the Unite members, based at depots in Runcorn, Bootle, Birkenhead, St Helens, Liverpool, Southport, Winsford and Manchester, vote for strike action, bus services across the region will be seriously disrupted.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “The best thing for Arriva to do is provide a decent pay rise for its hard-working and underpaid drivers. Arriva can prevent strikes from occurring, and the resulting disruption to passengers, by returning to the negotiating table and making a decent offer.
“But Arriva North West should be in no doubt that Unite is dedicated to fighting for our members’ jobs, pay and conditions, and if there is no improved offer and union members vote for strike action, we are prepared for a relentless campaign,” she added.
The ballot of 1,800 staff across 11 depots opens today (September 28) and closes on October 15. If the workers vote in favour of industrial action, strikes could begin at the end of October.
In a separate dispute, Unite is also balloting Stagecoach bus drivers for strike action over pay in the North West region and in other locations throughout the UK.
Unite regional officer Alison Spenser-Scragg said, “The workforces’ anger at Arriva’s refusal to put forward an adequate pay increase means we have had no choice but to ballot for industrial action.
“Bus workers were rightly hailed as heroes during lockdown. Arriva need to reward this dedication with a decent pay award.”
By Ryan Fletcher