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UPDATED Bus workers begin strike action
7:48am Friday 13th September 2013 in News
BUS workers at Network Warrington have started the first in a series of strike action in a row over pay.
Staff at the bus company have been told there will be no pay rise for them this year, for the first time in 16 years.
Members of the Unite union have begun a picket outside the company's depot on Brian Bevan Island today, Friday.
The drivers say the action has also been taken because of their concerns about the way the company is being run.
One driver said: "We apologise to the public for the incovenience this has caused. We don't want to have to go out on strike but feel we have to.
"This has been coming for the last three years. Most of the employees are longstanding members of staff.
"The people that know what the business needs are the people doing the job.
"When they ask us for ideas six weeks down the line they are completely different."
But a company spokesman said: "Unite have conducted a ballot on the pay freeze and this is what the staff are striking over.
"If the staff are now saying differently then that is a different issue and requires a new ballot.
"There is no money for a pay rise. The company has had a substantial loan from WBC this year and for 16 years the staff have received a pay rise. "
They will walk out one day a week for the next seven weeks in a move which has paralysed the majority of the buses.
Apart from contracted services to Lymm High and Cardinal Newman and some businesses such as O2 and United Utilitiies - all other buses have been cancelled for the day.
The bosses at the company say they are 'extremely disappointed' by the decision.
The next strike will be next Saturday, September 21.
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