Opal card readers will be switched off on buses across Sydney’s Inner West and South West on Monday, as drivers commence industrial action over the operator’s refusal to accept same-job, same-pay provisions.
TWU and RTBU members across Regions 3 and 6 of Sydney’s bus network have endorsed the action, providing fare-free travel for passengers on buses operated by Transit Systems for 24 hours.
The action comes after more than 93% of drivers across both regions endorsed taking industrial action, and with Transit Systems still refusing to negotiate even after the overwhelming vote result.
TWU NSW State Secretary Richard Olsen said: “To anyone getting on a bus in Sydney’s South West and Inner West tomorrow, you can leave your Opal card in your wallet.”
“Bus drivers are turning off the ticket machines to send a message loud and clear to Transit Systems – it’s time for the company to get serious and come to the negotiating table” Mr Olsen said.
“Rather than coming to the negotiating table, Transit Systems are outrageously threatening to dock more than a third of drivers’ pay for taking this legally protected industrial action.”
“They’re not asking for much – all drivers want is a guarantee that whether you’re driving a bus in Liverpool or in Leichhardt, you will be paid the same regardless.”
In addition to the same-job same-pay provisions, drivers are also seeking for superannuation to be paid on all earnings. Currently, drivers are not paid any super on overtime or other additional earnings, which often makes up a significant portion of drivers’ total income.
Mr Olsen said that if Transit Systems continues to dig its heels in, drivers could be forced to resort to strike action.
“If Transit Systems continue to refuse to negotiate with their drivers, then they risk the possibility of drivers deciding to go on strike to have their voices heard. The only way that can be avoided is for Transit Systems to end their stubborn refusal to negotiate.”
- Transit Systems operates two of Sydney’s bus regions:
- Region 3 covering Parramatta, Liverpool, Merrylands, Prairiewood and Fairfield
- Region 6 covering Sydney’s Inner West and South
- Click here to a view a map of Sydney’s bus regions
- The TWU has given an undertaking that industrial action will not disrupt HSC students during their exam period
Media Contact: Mitch Wright – 0430 186 590