Bus workers at Metroline in north London have voted by over 90 percent for strikes in an indicative ballot over the introduction of a new substance misuse policy.
The Unite union has concerns over how the new policy will be used.
Guidelines issued to drivers state that the factors used to identify potential alcohol or drug dependency will include “borrowing money from colleagues” and “reduced concern for personal appearance”.
Many bus workers feel that this leaves the policy open to abuse and victimisation by management. There are many other concerns behind the big strike vote – including attacks on canteen facilities and many disciplinaries.
The vote was an important test of the mood in the garages. Many union activists were disappointed with the way in which the 2008 pay claim ended in accepting a deal that was way off the original goals of the campaign.
The strike vote sends a clear message to the company that workers are still united and prepared to stand up and fight.