Search

26/10/2021

'We are being walked on', slam Longford Iarnród Éireann staff

Staff say further stoppages, in addition to four further one day protests, are possible

Train strike

Iarnród Éireann staff on the picket line at Longford Train station earlier today

Striking Iarnród Éireann staff in Longford have hinted that further stoppages in addition to the first of five 24-hour nationwide rail strikes could be in the offing in a row over pay.

Staff on the picket line outside Longford Train Station say they are prepared to up the ante against the State-owned rail operator unless their demands for a 3.75 per cent pay rise are met.

"They owe us 6.5 per cent at the minute but there is no talk about that and they want to introduce productivity on top of nothing," said a spokesperson earlier today.

Irish Rail workers are seeking the near four per cent a year pay rise over three years to match recent wage increases secured by Luas and Dublin Bus workers.

Iarnród Éireann, meanwhile, says it has amassed losses of nearly €160m, meaning agreeing to those demands would effectively consign the company to "trading recklessly”.

It argued that conceding the unions’ claim would cost an extra €43m over three years and push it into insolvency.

Despite those warnings and empathy being expressed to the estimated 155,000 passengers who were expected to be impacted by today's action, rail staff contend little alternatives have been left open to them.

Asked if further protests were likely, the spokesperson said staff were very much united, vowing to return to the picket lines for "as long as it takes".

He said: "We apologise to them (passengers) of course but this is what we have to do to get a pay rise.

"It’s been ten years (since last pay rise), it’s disgraceful.

"You look at austerity, property tax, the USC (Universal Social Charge), we pay colossal tax."

Another worker, holding a placard aloft underlined those sentiments.

"The fact of the matter is it’s (Iarnród Éireann) a public service."

"If the Government of the day want a public service, they have to pay for that service," he said.

To continue reading this archived article for FREE,
please just kindly register and/or log in.


Registration is absolutely 100% FREE and will help us personalise your experience on our sites. You can also sign up to our carefully curated newsletter(s) to keep up to date with your latest local news!

Register / Login

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.