London bus drivers set to strike on same days as Underground and rail workers

Industrial action will affect south and west of the city

Commuters stand in a queue waiting for a bus at London Bridge station ahead of a strike by bus drivers. PA.
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London is to face further transport chaos this month after bus drivers voted to strike alongside Underground and railway workers.

Members of Unite employed by London United will walk out on August 19 and 20 in a row over pay and work conditions.

The bus strike involves areas in south and west London.

The union said the strike was a result of the company offering a pay increase of 3.6 per cent in 2022 and 4.2 per cent next year, which it described as a real-terms pay cut due to the soaring rate of inflation.

Sharon Graham, Unite's general secretary, said: “The parent company RATP is fabulously wealthy and it can fully afford to pay our members a decent wage increase.”

She added that Unite members play “a crucial role” in London transport and they will not stand for seeing their pay continuously eroded.

“Unite does what it says on the trade union tin and always defends the jobs, pay and conditions of its members,” Ms Graham said.

“Our members at London United will receive the union’s complete support until this dispute is resolved and a fair pay offer secured.”

On Friday it was announced that workers at the port of Felixstowe agreed to strike for eight days later this month.

Members of Unite will walk out on August 21 after talks at the conciliation service Acas failed to resolve the row.

Unite said more than 1,900 workers at Felixstowe, the country’s biggest container port, will be taking industrial action.

The strike was called after Unite said the Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company failed to improve on its offer of a 7 per cent pay increase, describing it as “significantly below” inflation.

Relations between unions and company bosses have soured in recent months amid the threat of industrial action.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps accused unions in June of pursuing “some sort of class war” and at the end of July said they were exploiting “archaic rules from 1919” to discourage staff from working on Sundays.

Unions have repeatedly accused the government and train companies of lying about stalled negotiations and claims of informal strikes.

The threat of walkouts also lingers over other parts of the UK transport sector, from airlines to container ship ports.

Updated: August 05, 2022, 7:56 PM
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