Socialist Worker

Strike ballot at First Bus in Bristol over sackings

by a Bristol bus driver
Issue No. 2051

A successful fightback at First Bus in Bristol has begun. The T&G union agreed to start balloting to strike over the recent sackings of 14 drivers and a further 140 being put on final written warnings.

The drivers had been sacked as the management had claimed they had not been running their buses to time.

Procedures were not followed which resulted in many drivers with a long and clean service record being sacked.

Management had recently claimed that they had no time to meet with union negotiators over our current pay dispute. However, they found time to discuss this.


All 14 drivers that were sacked have now been reinstated. The union has now called off the strike.

Clearly the workers at the company are happy with their victory. However, there are still all the drivers on final warnings. These are being dealt with on a case-by-case basis. It will take months to clear these drivers’ records.

Many drivers still want to strike, partly to clear the remaining 140 of their colleagues, but also to pay back the company for the way they have been treated.

Although the strike is off for now, the pay negotiations have now begun.

Managment had previously refused to talk about the pay offer until the sackings had been cleared up.

The drivers will be looking very closely at the pay offer when they finally get it to see if it shows a change of heart from the bosses.

If it is not good enough, the drivers are too angry to take it without a fight this time.

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Article information

Tue 15 May 2007, 18:31 BST
Issue No. 2051
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