Regional trains and buses to go on strike this week after pay talks break down
Regional transport workers are to stage a two-day strike after negotiations to reach a new pay deal broke down.
Buses and local train services not run by NS will be hit by the stoppage on Thursday and Friday after the FNV union said the terms offered by employers’ association VWOV were not good enough. Tram and bus services in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague are also unaffected.
Talks broke down at 3am on Wednesday when the union, which represents thousands of train drivers, bus drivers and conductors, rejected a proposed deal worth around 8% plus measures to reduce the pressures on staff.
VWOV chairman Fred Kagje defended the deal, describing it as an ‘above average pay offer’, and claimed the FNV had broken off negotiations. ‘We’ve done everything we can to reach a collective agreement,’ he said.
FNV representative Marijn van der Gaag said that the two sides had ‘reached an impasse’ and denied the union had walked out of the talks.
The strike is the latest stage of a long-running dispute over public sector pay which has caused several regional stoppages through the autumn. Last Friday Arriva and Keolis staff staged a 24-hour strike affecting buses and trains in the east of the country.
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