Possible public transport strikes on Wednesday

5th October 2009, Comments 0 comments

Labour unions seek to bring public transport in three main cities to a complete standstill during morning rush hours to protest against the government's plans to raise legal retirement age.

Rijswijk – Public transport will come to a standstill in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague Wednesday at morning peak hours if the AbvaKabo FNV labour union had its way, reported NU.nl.

The strike is a protest against parliament's plans to raise legal retirement age from 65 to 67 years.

The strikes are scheduled to take place during morning peak hours as the management of transport companies refused to cooperate with the unions.

“The preparations are in full swing.”A spokesman of the union said on Monday morning. 

Legal proceedings
The municipal transport companies (GVB) is taking the union to court Tuesday morning in a bid to prevent the labour action.

The strike "is aimed against a government policy and not one of the employer," said Brit Wijkniet, a spokeswoman for the Amsterdam public transport company GVB.

"The action is disproportionate," she said, adding that parliament had yet to vote on the proposal of increasing the legal retirement age.

Wijniet said the last strike in the public transport sector in Amsterdam, in which some 4,000 people are employed, was held in 2004.

Travellers association Rover called AbvaKabo FNV labour union's actions “terribly antisocial”.

A spokeswoman for the association said Monday she had "no idea why travellers would have to be the victim of this again.”

The discussion about legal retirement age applies to all workers and not just tram conductors. Moreover the parliament has yet to vote on the proposal. “This reckless initiative seems therefore premature.”

Vanessa Andreae / AFP / Expatica

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