It turns out Mondays still suck for Melbournians as commuters have been warned not to expect a free ride to work during next week’s union strikes.
Initially it was reported that the strike would have minimal impact on commuters and would basically just mean we all cop a free ride to work, but the reality seems to be much less exciting. Now we’re to expect major delays AND have to pay for it. Talk about a rip off.
According to The Age, approximately 1500 Rail, Tram and Bus Union member are preparing to take industrial action including walking off the job on Monday in protest of unfair working conditions.
The strikes will apparently include work stoppages, which could result in lengthy delays. According to Metro Trains’ chief executive, Raymond O’Flaherty, commuters should expect delays of up to an hour on Monday morning. Great. Can’t wait to leave the house an hour early to get to work.
“We want to get a new agreement in place as quickly as possible. We want to ramp up the pace of the negotiations,” Mr O’Flaherty said in a press conference at Southern Cross Station today.
Workers are demanding a 6% pay increase, but according to RTBU’s Luba Grigorovitch, the real issue is making sure public transport workers secure better working conditions in future.
“With 99 per cent of members who voted endorsing industrial action it is clear members are frustrated by Metro’s tactics and aggressive attacks on hard-won conditions,” Ms Grigorovitch said of the overwhelming majority of union members in favour of the strike.
According to Ms Grigorovitch, the industrial action is a “last resort” after five months of negotiations with Metro Trains.
So it looks like we may not cop free public transport on Monday. I suggest having your myki handy just in case.