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Meeting with DRD Minister Danny Kennedy

2 July 2015

TSSA meet with the minister of DRD Danny Kennedy and staff from the department on Wednesday 1 July 2015. This meeting was in response to a letter we sent to the minister after the announcement in May of the pause in the public consultation process to allow UNITE trade union to look at finding more efficiencies.

 

During the meeting we raised the issue that we believe any future talks or negotiations must include all representative trade unions at Translink. We were encouraged by the assurances from the minister that any future process involving cost efficiencies would be with the full involvement of all the unions.

We reminded the minister that members of our union have already bore the brunt of reductions in staffing levels through a combination of reorganisations and the voluntary exit scheme and that there was no more scope for further reductions in the clerical, supervisor or MPT grades. We also emphasised the need for better transparency and communication between the company and the trade unions as trust and moral is at its lowest.

We also reiterated that as a union we are always prepared to work collaboratively with Translink as long as it is genuine and meaningful. We also believe a more strategic vision is needed rather than just a narrow cost cutting agenda. This strategic vision can only be identified and realised with the full input of all staff within Translink.

We welcome that during the meeting the minister confirmed his commitment to opposing privatisation of public transport in Northern Ireland. The minister further committed to meeting with the TSSA on any future concerns we may have.

We suggested that we believe it is crucial that we establish a more formal process that encourages more engagement between senior management and all the trade unions collectively.

We will write both to the minister and Translink reaffirming our position and putting forward proposals of the way forward of dealing with the difficult financial situation that looks to prevent any further job losses or attacks on terms and conditions.

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