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Mark Stedman
easter strike

Luas strike to go ahead on Easter Sunday and Monday

This weekend’s strike is back on, following the rejection of a deal by tram workers.

A LUAS STRIKE will go ahead on Easter Sunday and Monday, trade union Siptu has confirmed.

It follows the rejection by workers of Workplace Relations Commission proposals aimed at resolving the long-running dispute at the Dublin tram service.

“Luas drivers and revenue protection grades at Transdev have overwhelmingly rejected proposals on pay and productivity brokered at the Workplace Relations Commission,” a statement from Siptu said this evening.

The drivers’ ballot rejected the proposals by almost 100%. The other grades voted by 100% to reject the WRC proposals.

The two days of strike action have been timed to cause maximum impact, with some half a million people expected in the city for the 1916 centenary commemorations this weekend.

Further days of strike action are planned for April, on the following dates:

  • Saturday 2 April 
  • Sunday 3 April
  • Saturday 23 April
  • Sunday 24  April


A planned strike on St Patrick’s Day was called off at the last minute following marathon talks between Transdev, which runs the service, and trade union negotiators at the WRC.

The deal that emerged from that meeting, which included pay increases of up to 18%, was put to a ballot of workers.

In a statement, Transdev said its management were shocked and disappointed at the rejection of the agreement.

“We entered the talks in good faith and while the WRC proposal is challenging for the company we were 100% committed to supporting it.”

Managing Director Gerry Madden said the company would not be offering any “knee jerk response” to the rejection of deal.

“The Workplace Relations Commission Proposal was at the very outer limits of what we could afford and for this to be rejected is deeply disappointing. In accordance with the terms of the WRC document that proposal is now withdrawn.”

He added:

We will not be issuing any knee jerk response —this decision has serious implications for the company and our staff and we will reflect over the weekend and issue a considered response.Transdev’s statement ends with a call on the union “to answer why they think it’s acceptable to strike over the Easter Weekend”.  The company adds that it wishes to express its “deep regret and disappointment to Luas customers and the travelling public”.

Communications breakdown

Siptu organiser Owen Reidy said it seemed clear “there is a complete breakdown in the relationship and trust between the driver grade and management at the company”.

He said the union had compiled some feedback from members in the driver grade as to why they have rejected the proposals, including the following:

  • Drivers did not want to accept a new pay scale that leaves new entrants on lower pay than current staff
  • Drivers are of the view that the productivity sought in the proposal was disproportionate and vague in the case of the Luas extension
  • Drivers also expressed concern that they did not trust how management would implement such productivity measures

Reidy added:

We accept the democratic decision of our members. We have always stated that notified industrial action will proceed unless an agreement is reached and that remains the case.

The union remains available for discussions, he said.

Originally published: 5pm

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