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Bus services to operate as normal this week after last ditch talks avert action

Translink and union officials have reach agreement to avert a bus strike due to start tomorrow (Tuesday, May 17).

In a statement issued this afternoon (Monday), the public transport operator said it welcomed the “positive engagement” with officials from Unite the Union and GMB Bus Driver Trade Unions.

A Translink spokesperson said: “Following a meeting with the Union officials today, we have structured a revised offer that acknowledges their concerns over increasing inflation and the cost of living while also supporting wider business needs.

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“We welcome this constructive engagement with our unions.

Bus strike has been suspended. Image by Google

“Preventing this industrial action has been of the utmost priority for the company. We are pleased to have found a way forward that will enable us to build back public transport for a more sustainable and better future for all”.

Translink added that all it bus services including school buses will operate as normal from Tuesday and for the rest of the week.

The GMB said that as a gesture of goodwill, industrial action has been suspended until workers have voted on the new offer.

Drivers, cleaners and shunters had been due to walk out for seven days in a strike the union warned would “bring Northern Ireland to a standstill”.

Peter Macklin, GMB regional organiser, said: “After last ditch talks, Translink workers now have a revised pay offer.

“As a gesture of goodwill, industrial action has been suspended until workers have voted on the new offer.

“If they accept it, the strikes would be cancelled completely. But if they turn it down, GMB will meet with members immediately to discuss new strike dates.”
Read more Drivers to ‘shut down’ public bus services across Northern Ireland in 7-day strike