Belgium aims for less train strikes
A new agreement that sets stricter rules for future strike actions have been signed with the two major rail unions.13 June 2008
BELGIUM - Rail passengers in Belgium can rest assured as the two major rail unions have signed an agreement that sets stricter rules for future strike actions.
The agreement was signed by both the Christian and socialist union and NMBS management. It sets the rules for future rail strikes.
From now on, only national unions can announce a strike, the official announcement of which is to precede the strike by 10 days.
According to the agreement, consultative procedures are to be observed more rigorously and in the case of a social conflict, mediators are to be appointed immediately.
The signatories also vouch to deliver passengers to their destination in case of a strike. Strikers will be considered as unlawfully absent if they fail to observe the procedures.
However, not all unions have chosen to sign the document.
OVS, the smallest and independent of the railway unions, did not sign the agreement and intends to work-to-rule as from Monday. OVS is not recognised as a union by the other partners but has a lot of train drivers among its members.
[flandersnews.be / Expatica]