Important breakthrough in the Sydney rail dispute which has caused months-long train chaos
- Modification deal has ended disruptions to Sydney’s bus and train lines
- A fleet of Korean-built trains has been the dividing line between government and union.
- To improve monitoring of the platform, the union demanded $1billion in safety improvements
- They reached an agreement Friday. The union cancelled further action
After many months of intense negotiations and industrial action, the NSW government reached an agreement with rail unions to change a fleet train.
Premier Dominic Perrottet stated, “Today the people of Sydney have been put first,” in a joint statement with Damien Tudehope (Finance Minister) and David Elliott on Friday.
It was a dispute between the parties over safety modifications for a fleet of Korean intercity trains worth multibillions. They have been stored since 2019
After months and months of failed talks, as well as accusations of poor faith by both sides of the negotiations, Friday’s agreement with the union was reached.
Sydney’s strike on train transport has been ended by the agreement between government and Transport Union.
Rail, Tram and Bus Union sent a Friday evening letter to all its members, praising their members’ ‘unity and commitment’, pointing out that the government was forced to accept a few concessions.
Guards will be able to watch platforms from the departure and arrival of trains with modifications. This improves safety. They were argued unnecessary by the government and could cost as much as $1billion.
Ministers and premier said that millions of commuters from Sydney and NSW will be able catch a train again without having to worry about union disruptions. This was in accordance with the NSW government’s agreement with the Combined Rail Unions.
“For far too long, school children, workers and entrepreneurs have seen their lives and business destroyed by strikes by rail unions.
AAP was informed by Alex Claassens, the state secretary of the RTBU.
He said, “We believed that common sense would eventually prevail” and that the government would offer a fair enterprise agreement and safe trains to commuters and workers.
After months of negotiations with unions over the Korean-built train fleet, Transport Minister David Elliott (above), announced Friday that the strike was over.
“This win for workers does not mean that industrial action is necessary for next week.
After Sydney commuters received a week’s worth of transport for free, the government offered to prevent planned industrial action that would have reduced the network’s ability to one-third.
As they tried to settle the dispute, the government and the union entered into mediation for the duration of the week.
Labor supported the resolution, and it was a sign that common sense finally won. However, Labor said that this shouldn’t take so long.
Jo Haylen, transport spokesperson, said: “There are serious questions as to why the Government failed to sign an deed regarding future intercity fleets until today.”
Union disruption meant that $1billion was needed to make safety modifications in order for better platform monitoring when approaching or departing trains.
The details of last year’s expired agreement are still being worked out.
These details are subject to independent review by the Fair Work Commission.
“We are not yet at the finish line, but our unity, commitment, and the need to do safety alterations has forced the government to comply… we have pushed them until they reach a level where a fair deal is possible,” the RTBU sent to its members Friday.
According to the government, the Fair Work Commission would produce a vote by rail unions and an ongoing arbitration as they work through some remaining issues.
The government stated that while Fair Work Commission processes are in progress, the Combined Rail Unions had agreed to refrain from taking any industrial action.