Socialist Worker

Unofficial bus strike wins results

by Esme Choonara
Issue No. 2167

Bus drivers at Edgware garage in north west London won a stunning victory this morning (Saturday) after walking out over rota changes.

Drivers on the 114 route, which is operated by Sovereign, refused to take their buses out this morning in protest at the imposition of new driving schedules and attacks on meal breaks. Drivers on other routes refused to cross the picket line, bringing the garage to a standstill.

By 7.30am around 40 drivers were gathered outside the garage. Sovereign sent a manager to speak to the drivers.

After discussions with the picketing workers, the manager agreed to all the drivers' demands and gave them a written statement to say that the old schedules would be reinstated with immediate effect until the company can meet with union representatives next week.

The agreement also stated that there would be no action taken against any of the drivers involved in the walkout and that they would all be paid in full.

Drivers returned to duties buoyed by the immediate success of their direct action.

A Unite member who was on the picket line told Socialist Worker, 'It was beautiful to see the power of the working class in action.'

One of the 114 drivers told Socialist Worker, 'Our action was a 100 percent success. Management had refused to talk to us or consult on the new rotas so we said that we are not doing it. All the drivers feel really good. We stuck together and we succeeded.'

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Article information

Sat 5 Sep 2009, 19:15 BST
Issue No. 2167
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