Go North East services impacted as staff take indefinite strike action

Staff at Go North East are taking indefinite strike action following a long-running pay dispute.
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Go North East services are set to be further impacted as staff have opted to take indefinite strike action as part of a long-running pay dispute.

The bus company has stated that the industrial action following Uniterepresentatives walking away from a settlement they themselves proposed.

Go North East has said that on Tuesday, October 10, the union put forward a resolution that would see over 1,000 workers receive a 10% pay rise, backdated to July 1 - as well as a guarantee of an ‘inflation-proofed’ pay rise in eight months time.

It is also reported that Unite had asked the company that the discussion of working conditions be separated from pay.

Go North East services are set to be disputed as Unite announces indefinite strike action. Photo: Go North East.Go North East services are set to be disputed as Unite announces indefinite strike action. Photo: Go North East.
Go North East services are set to be disputed as Unite announces indefinite strike action. Photo: Go North East.

Bosses at Go North East had accepted the proposals but have stated that on Friday, October 13, Unite announced a ‘U-turn’ and called indefinite strike action from October 28.

Ben Maxfield, Go North East business director, has hit out at Unite over the decision to continue with industrial action and has apologised to anyone impacted by the strike.

He said: “Our workforce is beside itself with worry, but instead of a constructive dialogue what we are seeing from the local Unite representatives is moving goal posts, U-turns and knee-jerk reactions, with no consideration of the impact on the travelling public.

“This dispute and strike are entirely of Unite’s making. All we want is for the local union representatives to work constructively and collaboratively with us to secure the region’s bus services.

“There is mounting anger within the workforce over Unite’s handling of negotiations and their call for a continuous strike. Unite are literally rejecting a deal they themselves proposed.

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“Wild and unfounded claims by the union of ‘paltry pay offers’, and false claims that the company are ‘not coming to the table’ don’t help.

“I deeply apologise to everyone in the region who will be affected by Unite’s strike. Rest assured that we will continue to work towards the quickest solution possible.”

The indefinite strike action comes on top of seven days of industrial action, which has started today (Saturday, October 14).

It means that no Go North East services will run throughout the period of industrial action, except for contracted school services.