Stagecoach urges Unite to enter talks with ACAS to end unnecessary strike action

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Stagecoach Yorkshire has urged Unite to come to joint talks with the arbitration service ACAS to agree a way forward on pay and bring an end to the current ‘unnecessary strike action that is causing untold disruption for communities in South Yorkshire.’

Stagecoach said it remains committed to resolving the pay dispute with Unite for its employees in South Yorkshire and has so far made six different pay offers, all of which have been declined, including the latest, above inflation offer that it said would see an immediate 6% increase in the current rates of pay. The operator has now approached dispute resolution service ACAS for support in trying to find a solution to the current impasse and to ‘ensure the long-term sustainability of the bus network is protected for customers and communities in Yorkshire.’

Phil Medlicott, Managing Director of Stagecoach Yorkshire, said: “We recognise the impact that Unite’s actions are having on people locally, and we share people’s frustrations over the damage being caused to local communities and businesses. That’s why we remain 100% committed to reaching an agreement with Unite. Our staff deserve a good pay rise and that is what we have offered. However there needs to be flexibility on both sides and we are hopeful that the talks with ACAS will help to find a way forward in settling this dispute.

“Our teams continue to do an amazing job during the ongoing pandemic, and we very much appreciate everything they do. But at the same time, we have a commitment to continue to protect jobs and ensure that future bus services in Yorkshire remain sustainable for our customers to continue to use. We have now reached agreement with Unite at the vast majority of depots across England, Scotland and Wales, and there is no reason why we cannot reach a sensible and affordable agreement for South Yorkshire.”

Stagecoach South Yorkshire services 1, 25, 57, 120 and 22X are operating to a reduced schedule due to the indefinite strike action. RICHARD SHARMAN