Management at Metrobus, part of the Go-Ahead transport group, went to the High Court just hours before last week’s strike. They won a ruling to stop 1,000 drivers in the Unite union taking their second day of strike action.
Sources in Unite said that the court had rejected most of the company’s points.
But then it ruled that the union had not given notification of the strike ballot results soon enough and that it should have informed the company not just of numbers and locations of drivers planning to strike, but of details of their job grades.
The ruling is a serious attack on trade union rights and if unchallenged could have implications for the whole trade union movement.
Unite organiser Peter Kavanagh told Socialist Worker, “In the union’s view this was one of the most bizarre rulings we have seen – even within the anti-union laws that exist in Britain.
“We will be closely inspecting the transcript of the judgement and hope to be in a position to challenge it.”
Metrobus workers were angry that management had used the courts to stop them striking.
Many drivers pointed out that they had overwhelmingly voted for strikes and that a 24-hour strike last month had been extremely successful.
One Unite member at Metrobus told Socialist Worker, “The management treat us with contempt. We certainly plan to be part of future London-wide action.”
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