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ACTION’s soiled bus drivers need your help

By phage - 19 May 2010 114

ACTION bus

Greetings Rioters,

A good friend and ACTION bus driver just sent this through to me. If you are able to help by collecting passanger signatures please contact Dan or attend the meeting this Sunday. If you are approached to give your signature please do so in support of your local drivers.

Thanks! 

Dearest Rads,
From monday 24th of may ACTION bus drivers in canberra are launching a 7 day fare strike.  We are being asked to accept a raft of changes that include a payrise lower than inflation (a pay cut).

A complicated set of changes to our part time to fulltime ratio that mean drivers will be precariously employed for longer and be exposed to highly variable hours from 4 to 10 hours week to week to budget around.  And that we be forced to work weekend shifts without penalty.

The latest network we are operating sees the average service run for 90 mintutes with an average turnaround time at 5 minutes.

Thats five minutes to unload, secure the bus, use the bathroom, check for lost property, pull up on platform load passengers and depart for another 90 minute run.  When you put a human into this
formula you have unsafe and undignified work practices, national driving guidelines require 10 minutes break from the wheel every two hours for safety, especially important for us who carry precious cargo.  Dignity requires drivers be allowed to use the toilet, time pressures on drivers have resulted in many drivers soiling themselves on the job, mostly unreported for obvious reasons.

Our demands are modest but our resolve is not.  We demand that our annual pay rise remain at 4% over the next three years. That ACTION make our shifts conform to national driving standards, a 10 minute break every 2 hours of driving.  Finally that our hard fought conditions of employ are carried over unaltered.

At moments when workers strike politics become very simple.  You can suck the bosses scaly iguana on the sidelines by doing nothing, you can act the spineless scumbag scab or act in solidarity with your fellow workers.  I call a WSN meeting in canberra at the phoenix pub at 1pm on sunday the day before we kick our strike off.

Proposed and will be organised prior are a petition and a contact list for a protest action in support of our campaign for members to ride on buses to collect names and details of passengers throughout the 7 days.  Availability in peak mornings are desirable to join a driver on shift, please feel free to contact me during the week through this channel if your keen or have questions, suggestions.  Which side are you on? A working class hero is something to be.

Warmest Solidarity,

DAN SMASH

PS.  If you aren’t a canberra resident or are housebound please send hatemail/abuse in support of the strikers to the following places.

— the chief minister jon stanhope
Phone: (02) 6205 0104
Fax: (02) 6205 0433
Email:stanhope@act.gov.au

— Territory and Municipal Services (TAMS)
Postal Address         
GPO Box 158
Canberra ACT 2601
Online Contact link from
 http://www.tams.act.gov.au/functions/contact_us
Contact Numbers
Phone (24hrs)   13 22 81 (ACT and NSW residents only)
Phone (24hrs)   (02) 6207 5111 (For callers outside NSW/ACT)
Phone (TTY)     (02) 6207 0494
Phone (TIS)     13 14 50

— ACTION buses
By email:
action@act.gov.au
By telephone:
Call 13 17 10 or (02) 6207 7611 outside the ACT.
Hours of Operation:
7am to 8pm Monday to Friday
8am to 8pm Saturday
9am to 5pm Sunday and Public Holidays
9am to 1pm Christmas Day
By Post:
GPO Box 158
Canberra City ACT 2601
Australia

PPS.  please forward to anyone worth a squirt of piss.

What’s Your opinion?


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114 Responses to
ACTION’s soiled bus drivers need your help
mutley 12:43 pm 18 May 10

Clown Killer said :

You can suck the bosses scaly iguana on the sidelines by doing nothing, you can act the spineless scumbag scab…

You lost me there buddy. Suck it up or find another job. If you’re so concerned about safety and appropriate rest breaks then take responsibility for that – don’t go on whinging about the ‘bosses’.

Big +1 there

Katietonia 12:34 pm 18 May 10

Bet you’re all public servants sitting there on your 18th “internet browsing” break of the morning. Go tell a bus drive to their face they don’t deserve a pay rise for putting up with the public and being expected to babysit.

hellspice 12:28 pm 18 May 10

screaming banshee said :

PPS. please forward to anyone worth a squirt of piss.

Well if it isn’t gods gift….

Boo hoo, how many people out there haven’t had a payrise at all, I haven’t had anything in the last 3 years.

As for supporting my local drivers, would that be the drivers that cut me off when changing lanes (yes changing lanes, not pulling out from a stop) speeding and indicating for half a second before pulling out from a stop.

As for your turnaround times, what is average, for every 2 runs at 30 minutes each there is no break and 1 run at 110 minutes with a 10 minute break, there’s an average of 5 minutes break per 90 minutes.

Didn’t we get a report that you lot are already overpaid compared with bus drivers in other regions of Aus. I’ve changed my mind, bring on the trams I say, we can automate them and then we wouldn’t have to put up with whinging bus drivers with Kellogs licences.

Perhaps you can all move out to our drought stricken areas and cry a river for our farmers.

i wanted to say something but screaming banshee beat me to it !! +100

Ian 11:55 am 18 May 10

Boo hoo – have a cry over your sub-CPI pay rise. If you don’t like that go work for another bus company. Oh wait, then you’ll be getting a pay cut because ACTION is already paying you significantly above the market. Bring out the violins!

I thought you weren’t allowed to be paid while taking industrial action – which refusing to collect fares certainly is. Or did that get wound back by the Fed Govt? Or does the government of the socialist workers republic of the ACT somehow contort logic to determine its not industrial action? Personally if they don’t do their jobs 100%, which includes collecting fares, I’d be shutting down the buses and locking out the drivers until they decide to do their jobs.

In reality, what will happen is Stanhope will talk tough for a while, there’ll be a load of sabre rattling and brinksmanship, then he’ll cave, the TWU will get their payrise in return for some bullshit tradoffs, nothing will change with ACTION and Stanhope will claim the agreement as the most significant reforms in the history of ACT public transport.

dvaey 11:54 am 18 May 10

screaming banshee said :

Didn’t we get a report that you lot are already overpaid compared with bus drivers in other regions of Aus.

Several years ago I worked with a guy whos dad was a firefighter. I often remember hearing him talking about how ACTION bus drivers got paid more than firefighters did, as apparently driving a bus full of public servants or kids, is a more demanding job than attending fire and rescue scenes to save lives.

Seriously, how much money will be lost by bus drivers not collecting fares? My recollection during a similar strike many years ago, was that most bus passengers use weekly/monthly tickets, so ACTION has already made the money off the passengers, even if drivers dont collect cash fares, they might lose out on $20,000 for the whole week. In the scheme of things, thats barely a drop in the ocean in the whole costs of running the busline.

screaming banshee 11:18 am 18 May 10

PPS. please forward to anyone worth a squirt of piss.

Well if it isn’t gods gift….

Boo hoo, how many people out there haven’t had a payrise at all, I haven’t had anything in the last 3 years.

As for supporting my local drivers, would that be the drivers that cut me off when changing lanes (yes changing lanes, not pulling out from a stop) speeding and indicating for half a second before pulling out from a stop.

As for your turnaround times, what is average, for every 2 runs at 30 minutes each there is no break and 1 run at 110 minutes with a 10 minute break, there’s an average of 5 minutes break per 90 minutes.

Didn’t we get a report that you lot are already overpaid compared with bus drivers in other regions of Aus. I’ve changed my mind, bring on the trams I say, we can automate them and then we wouldn’t have to put up with whinging bus drivers with Kellogs licences.

Perhaps you can all move out to our drought stricken areas and cry a river for our farmers.

BimboGeek 11:17 am 18 May 10

I’m wondering how the conversation got to this point. In my head ACTION is this Skynet style computer that expects humans to be like robots.

Action: “We want you all to do 90 minutes then take a 5 minute break then turn around and go back”

Drivers: “Um yeah it takes longer than 5 minutes just to clean up the bus a little and pick up the next lot of passengers. Can you also give us an actual break break?”

Action: “No”

Drivers: “You realise we’re humans right? We need to take toilet breaks, that’s another 5 minutes to lock the bus, walk from the bus to the toilet, go to the toilet then walk back to the bus. At least once a day we even eat meals too!”

Action: “I’m sure you don’t really need to do that.”

Drivers: “This driver soiled himself because he didn’t get a toilet break all day.”

Action: “He really didn’t need one.”

georgesgenitals 11:02 am 18 May 10

caf said :

A pay rise lower than inflation is a pay cut? Interesting approach…

Yes it is, in “real terms”. Don’t ever let your employer try and tell you otherwise.

In real terms, everyones’ salary trends downward constantly unless an increase is granted. Ultimately, though, an employer will generally seek to pay the minimum needed to keep employees working and motivated (ie market rate based on skills and output). I think that inflation is a problem for employees, not business owners. People need to manage their own career to combat this problem.

sepi 10:50 am 18 May 10

I thought Canberra had alack of trained bus drivers – isn’t this the reason trotted out for why we can’t have increased buses on some routes. and yet now it turns out some are only working a few hours a week = give them a few more hours and give us a few more buses.

caf 10:41 am 18 May 10

A pay rise lower than inflation is a pay cut? Interesting approach…

Yes it is, in “real terms”. Don’t ever let your employer try and tell you otherwise.

Genie 10:34 am 18 May 10

p1 said :

Rather then this approach, have you considered simply stopping for a ten minute break every two hours? That would get the attention of the people on the bus in question…

That would just annoy the commuters and probably not get the drivers anywhere closer to getting basic rights at work.

All they are asking for is a 10 minute break at least once every 90-120 minutes. I know of public servants who in a 2 hour window will take at least 2 smoko’s and a coffee break.

I think the bus drivers clearly deserve some better working conditions, dont you ?

Clown Killer 10:27 am 18 May 10

You can suck the bosses scaly iguana on the sidelines by doing nothing, you can act the spineless scumbag scab…

You lost me there buddy. Suck it up or find another job. If you’re so concerned about safety and appropriate rest breaks then take responsibility for that – don’t go on whinging about the ‘bosses’.

Deadmandrinking 10:11 am 18 May 10

p1 said :

Rather then this approach, have you considered simply stopping for a ten minute break every two hours? That would get the attention of the people on the bus in question…

That’d probably end up disadvantaging the customers, I think the drivers want to get the message across to management, who will notice when they don’t get fares.

p1 9:54 am 18 May 10

Rather then this approach, have you considered simply stopping for a ten minute break every two hours? That would get the attention of the people on the bus in question…

georgesgenitals 9:21 am 18 May 10

A pay rise lower than inflation is a pay cut? Interesting approach…

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