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Privatisation of bus routes stalled to allow for further talks with unions

Both Siptu and the NBRU are opposed to the move.

Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

PLANS TO PUT out to tender several routes operated by Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann have been put on hold.

Siptu and the NBRU met with the National Transport Authority earlier today to discuss the proposals.

The move could affect more than 20 bus routes in Dublin.

It has been defended by Minister for Transport Paschal Donohoe, who said that a “far bigger bus market” will be needed in future.

The process, due to take place on December 1, has now been pushed back to allow further talks.

Speaking after the meeting, Siptu organiser Owen Reidy said the union will now seek an ‘urgent’ meeting with the Minister for Transport on the issue.

“The union has participated in seven LRC meetings on this matter to date and has received a lot of financial and other information from the NTA and both bus companies,” he said.

Unfortunately, the implications of what we have learned are extremely serious for our members

Reidy claims that it could expose both bus companies to up to €43 million in legacy costs.

NBRU general secretary Dermot O’Leary said:

“Although we remain implacably opposed to the privatisation of public bus transport services, we feel obligated, on behalf of the workers and the taxpayer, to bring clarity to all issues at stake.”

They include our determination to explain the fact that the London Model, which the NTA intend to replicate, will place an extra financial burden on the exchequer and precipitate a race to the bottom in workers terms and conditions.

Read: Night buses for Dublin on the table as part of ‘D-Day’ for privatised bus routes >

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