People of Louth Deserve Public Transport Service – Adams
Louth Sinn Féin TD Gerry Adams met with Bus Éireann staff in Dundalk today to hear their concerns about proposed cuts to their pay, changes to their conditions of work, and the slashing of bus services to and from Dundalk.
Gerry Adams said:
“This current crisis in Bus Éireann did not develop overnight; it is the culmination of many years of right wing policy implementation, lack of investment and disregard for rural Ireland.
“The staff I met today are furious that they are being made the scapegoats for this and previous government's privatisation agendas.
“It is not their fault that too many private bus licences were granted, it is not their fault that subventions have been slashed and there has been lack of investment in the Bus Éireann fleet and it is not their fault that the government doesn't reimburse the free travel pass adequately.
“Yet it is these staff who are set to lose up to 30% of their wages through the imposition of cuts to their overtime and cuts to their Sunday premium pay.
“In addition, the people I met face uncertainty and distress over what the future will bring following information that Bus Éireann management intends to bring in new contract and temporary staff.
“I raised the matter last week with the Taoiseach and I called on him to encourage Minister Ross to intervene as a matter of urgency.
“My fear though is that the government is not minded to stand on the side of the workers or the public on this matter and everything that has been said to date indicates that they are content to slash services to rural and regional areas, pilfer the wages of the staff and end the public service mandate of the Bus Éireann of old.”