Train services disrupted as rail workers take action
Wellington train services to be disrupted as rail workers
Train services in the Wellington region are set to be disrupted as rail workers at Transdev, the French multinational, and Hyundai Rotem Company prepare for a two-hour strike on Wednesday.
The rail workers are striking from 11am to 1pm on Wednesday over their employers' repeated attempts to clawback hard-won terms and conditions.
"These international companies want local rail workers to surrender many of their hard-won terms and conditions," said Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU) General Secretary Wayne Butson.
Transdev and Hyundai Rotem Company are private companies providing a public service under contract with the Greater Wellington Regional Council. In their bids to run the region's train services both companies committed to employ rail workers who transferred from KiwiRail on the same or more favourable terms and conditions.
"When the two companies made their bids to Greater Wellington Regional Council both committed to employing staff who were transferring from KiwiRail on the same or more favourable terms and conditions. But Transdev and Hyundai Rotem Company want to break that commitment," said Butson.
"This really is a last resort for our members. They've made their case over and over again, but their employer is set on clawing back as many terms and conditions as possible."
"This is another example of private companies wanting to profit off the back of their workforce. We saw it with bus companies and now we're seeing it with train operators. The way these companies maximise their profits is by trying to screw down terms and conditions for their workers. It's a disgrace and the whole model is sanctioned by the Greater Wellington Regional Council."
Wednesday will be the first time strike action has disrupted rail services in Wellington since 1994.