Socialist Worker

Managers ‘desperate’ at CT Plus bus dispute

by Mark L Thomas
Issue No. 2224

Pickets at CT Plus on Friday of last week (Pic: http://www.guysmallman.com/Guy Smallman )

Pickets at CT Plus on Friday of last week (Pic: Guy Smallman)


Bus drivers at CT Plus’s Ash Grove garage in Hackney, east London, struck on Friday of last week in their battle for decent pay.

It was the second of four planned one-day strikes on consecutive Fridays. The workers are demanding a pay rise of the RPI inflation rate plus 2 percent.

More than 30 pickets were outside the Ash Grove garage by 8am.

Workers are angry at CT Plus bosses paying low wages despite making a lot of money.

One driver said, “They say it’s a social enterprise. It’s not. They make a profit, but keep it all themselves. If the company is raking in £23 million a year, we need to see a bit of it.”

CT Plus bus drivers are paid some of the lowest rates in London. Many say there is an culture of bullying at the firm.

And one driver said they only get an entitlement to the full rate of sick pay after ten years of service.

Some drivers who had crossed the picket line the previous Friday joined the latest strike.

CT Plus managers are offering scabs £30 a day extra plus a bonus of £150 if they scab on all four strike days.

But managers have also been driving buses.

One picket spotted a senior manager out driving a 388. “He earns between £80,000 and £90,000 a year—he must be desperate,” said the striker.

The dispute at CT Plus underlines the urgent need to return to a fight for a single rate of pay and uniform terms and conditions across all of London’s bus firms.

As one driver put it, “We need better pay—the same as other bus companies.

“We all do the same job, we all come under Transport for London.”


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Tue 19 Oct 2010, 18:53 BST
Issue No. 2224
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