Trade unionists will join School bus drivers on march from Union Regional offices to Belfast City Hall rally
Anger palpable among drivers over management bullying and impact it is having on workers and children with special needs
Education Authority representative and bus driver Ciaran McCallion commented ahead of tomorrow’s March for Respect by drivers in Belfast.
“The March for Respect was organised by the Education Authority drivers themselves. There is genuine disquiet among the workforce over bullying by bosses who are heaping on more and more pressure regardless of the impact it is having on the drivers or on the special needs children who rely on these services.
“There is also concern over the recent growth in the numbers of zero-hour contracts and agency working as well as the refusal of bosses to provide full-time contracts to longstanding drivers.
“The drivers feel that their dedication to the special needs children they transport day and daily is being abused beyond its limits. Rather than take industrial action that would have impacted the children, the drivers took the lead in organising this march to express their anger and exasperation over the way they are being treated by management.
“In addition, the drivers are calling for investment in an ageing fleet that is increasingly unfit to accommodate special needs children.
“Unite has more than 97% membership density among the Belfast Education Authority drivers and we are fully supporting their march for respect. The union’s Ireland Secretary Jackie Pollock will address tomorrow’s rally to offer his full backing to the EA bus drivers cause”, Mr McCallion said.