Socialist Worker

Action hits the Boris bikes

by Julie Sherry
Issue No. 2366

Pickets on Monday

Pickets on Monday (Pic: Emma Davis)

Up to 40 pickets surrounded a key Barclays Cycle Hire depot in north London on Monday of this week.

It was the first day of a 48 hour strike across London’s network of “Boris bikes” over conditions, pay and bullying management. 

The strikers are mechanics, drivers and operatives in the RMT union employed by Serco. 

Workers face a below inflation 2 percent pay rise while Serco bosses grabbed a 60 percent pay rise for themselves in the last seven years. The strikers were also angry at changes imposed to their rota system.

“We went along with a lot when the scheme started, because it was new and workers accepted a lot to get it going,” striker Caul told Socialist Worker. “But now it’s clear that the management are unprincipled. Morale has been brought to the ground.

“Drivers are feeling more and more insecure, because they’re increasingly bringing in temporary contracts. Dozens were made redundant at Waterloo, and weekend drivers are on zero hours contracts.”

Striker Ian added, “We keep this scheme running, and they pay us back with 2 percent—an effective pay cut! 

“It’s much more difficult to make plans around our shifts because you’re always uncertain when you’ll be free.

“But when anyone raises concerns or speaks up, they get jumped on.”

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Article information

Tue 13 Aug 2013, 16:11 BST
Issue No. 2366
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