Updated: 30/11/16 : 03:36:36
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Rural bus services under threat, warns union

THE DEATH knell for rural bus services if the Expressway service is restructured.

That's the stark warning from the National Bus and Rail Union (NBRU) today, Wednesday.

The union will engage in industrial action if Bus Eireann pushes ahead with the plan.

Later today, workers will begin a campaign against the latest planned reforms.

Cut Staff

Restructuring of the Expressway coach service as envisaged by management “will result in the death knell of rural bus services” the NBRU warns.

Last September, Bus Éireann signalled it wanted to separate Expressway from the rest of the company.

It also wants to cut staff numbers and introduce pay cuts for those remaining.

Up to 150 job cuts are in the pipeline and, says the union, compulsory redundancies have not being ruled out.

Management consultants at Grant Thornton were then asked by Bus Eireann to review its Expressway plan. 

A first draft of that report has now been received by Bus Eireann, The Irish Times reports today, Wednesday.

Not Tolerate

However the NBRU will oppose the company plan and has written to TDs.

The TDs were told by the NBRU union said it would “not tolerate the race-to-the-bottom model'' proposed earlier.

This model, it said, is being foisted upon Bus Éireann and its staff ''by the flawed policy of the Department of Transport”.

“The NBRU hit at ''faceless administrators who think that they have a God-given right to make decisions that effect the community without having to answer for their actions.”