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Go Bus Managers Will Help Keep School Buses Running

28 August 2018

Go Bus Managers Will Help Keep School Buses Running During First Union’s Latest Strike

Go Bus says that it is extremely disappointed the union is striking in Hamilton tomorrow, given they have agreed, finally, to meet and negotiate next week.

The short notice strike, which will run from 6am to midnight Wednesday 29 August, is aimed at disrupting passengers using Hamilton’s urban bus routes and school buses in Te Awamutu and Otorohanga.

Nigel Piper, Chief Operating Officer of Go Bus says while the company will aim to run a Saturday timetable for Hamilton services, its school buses in Te Awamutu and Otorohanga will not be affected, as the company’s managers will help non-union staff maintain these services.

“Members of our management team, including CEO Calum Haslop, last week familiarised themselves with the Te Awamutu and Otorohanga school bus services so that they could step into the driver’s seat in the event of a strike like this.

“We did this because getting kids to and from school will be our priority, and we are no longer prepared to sit back and allow students and their families to be unduly and unfairly disrupted.

“These short-notice strikes are just creating unrest for drivers and uncertainty for passengers. However, we are not willing to allow students to be left stranded on the side of the road, adversely affected by pointless short-notice strikes.”

Mr Piper says the company yesterday invited the union back to the table for talks and also yesterday lodged an application to the Employment Relations Authority for facilitated bargaining, a process intended to assist unduly drawn out and difficult pay negotiations.

“All our passengers can be assured that Go Bus has a proud track record of increasing wages beyond the level of inflation, the most recent being a 6.7% increase for Hamilton drivers just last December. Go Bus has no problems in attracting and retaining good, conscientious staff in the Waikato region.

“We also have a good record of successful negotiation with the various other unions that collectively represent a greater proportion of our people than First Union.”

Hamilton bus passengers can find information on individual bus route disruptions from the Busit website at www.busit.co.nz, by phoning 0800 205 305 or visiting busitwaikato on Facebook.

Whilst Go Bus has its application in to the ERA, no further comment will be made.

ends

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