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Unions launch group to represent National Express

9 May 2008. For immediate release

Unions launch group to represent National Express workers

Trade unions today inaugurated a network for workers at National Express Group at a two day meeting at the ITF in London.

Representatives from The Netherlands, Spain, the UK and USA met for the first time to discuss the coordination of activities relating to the National Express Group (NEX). The delegates cover the Group’s rail, bus, coach, inter-city and school bus operations in these countries and exchanged their experiences of dealing with the company

For example, in the UK, the rail sector is highly unionised and inherits the collective bargaining agreements from British Rail days. However, NEX’s US subsidiary, Durham, is considered an anti-union employer with a track record of poor labour relations and practices. Meanwhile NEX has acquired ALSA’s Spanish operation and is expanding its franchise business in Europe through the brand-name, Euroline. The new group welcomed a progress report from the British TUC on the establishment of a European Works Council at NEX.

Delegates agreed to further coordinate their European and global activities through the ITF and pledged to support the US workers in their organising campaigns. The group identified that long distance coach and Eurolines drivers were largely employed by third party operators and agreed to seek to promote the option of union membership and organisation to them via the ITF.

Mac Urata, Secretary of the ITF’s Inland Transport Section, commented: “This is the launch of a common forum for unions representing the workers of National Express that will allow us to represent them better, promote best practice, and hold the company to the highest standards.”

Present at the meeting were representatives of the following unions: CC.OO, and UGT (Spain); FNV Bondgenoten (Netherlands): IBT and TWU (USA), ASLEF, RMT, TSSA and UNITE (UK).
ENDS

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