Go North East bus workers are gearing up for an indefinite strike after two weeks of action.
The 1,300 strikers walked out for seven days on Saturday 30 September and another seven from last Saturday.
All-out continuous action is set to begin this Saturday.
They get just £12.83 an hour while drivers at Go North West are on £15.53 an hour.
Workers in Newcastle and Sunderland need a pay rise of 20 percent to get the same as those in Manchester.
Unite says Go North East workers’ pay has fallen by 5 percent in real terms since 2018.
One bus driver told Unite, “I’m struggling to pay my rent, to pay my council tax, to pay for the upkeep of my car that enables me to get to work in the first place.
“I’ve maxed out three credit cards, and I can’t pay for fuel. I’ve had to walk five miles to get to the picket line.
“I have to work seven days a week just to try to make ends meet. Two of those days are overtime, but after tax, it’s pointless doing overtime.
“For those two days working overtime, I take home less than a day’s wage.”
The striker added, “The company doesn’t appreciate how much we put into the job, which is incredibly stressful from the moment you start.
“They’ve put us under so much pressure. I’ve got an excellent driving record—I haven’t had any incidents in over ten years.
“But more and more now, I feel like I’m forced to take risks that make me uncomfortable because of the time pressures we’re under.
“We really shouldn’t be rushing with a vehicle as big as a bus.”
Unite union members are out at Go North East sites in Consett, Gateshead, Hexham, Percy Main (North Shields) Sunderland and Washington.
They rejected a 9.11 and 9.5 percent pay rise after bosses threatened to cut terms and conditions. Indefinite action is just the ticket to make bus bosses pay up.
Over 1,000 First Glasgow drivers are voting to strike over pay. The Unite members previously rejected a pay offer by 99 percent.
They will vote until 7 November and are employed by First Glasgow (No1) and First Glasgow (No2). Depots at Blantyre, Caledonia, Dumbarton, Overtown and Scotstoun will be hit.
And 150 engineers at the two companies voted 96 percent and 100 percent for action on turnouts of over 80 percent.Original post