Are Arriva buses running today? How the bus strike is affecting services in Liverpool and Manchester
Arriva bus strikes are continuing across the North West this week after workers walked out over a pay dispute.
There has been severe disruption to the travel operator’s services after 1,800 workers walked out across across Merseyside, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Cheshire on Wednesday.
Strikes are continuing after union reps said they would not accept the latest offer.
The strikes are supported by Unite and GMB trade unions, which say the pay deal offered is unacceptable due to the cost of living crisis.
i takes a look at everything you need to know about the strikes, and if buses are running today.
Are Arriva buses running today?
The strikes are continuing today and will do so indefinitely until the dispute is resolved, according to union bosses.
Arriva North West (ANW) has confirmed is unable to run any of its services in Lancashire, Merseyside, Cheshire and Greater Manchester today.
The only service believed to be left running in Liverpool is the Liverpool Clatterbridge Hospital shuttle service.
Dave Lee, a union representative from the St Helens depot, said: “Yes we will continue to strike into next week as the 8.5 per cent rise they keep talking about it actually not as it seems because instead of it being implemented from April it’s split into two increments.”
Why is the strike happening?
Staff have been negotiating with the Arriva over pay for the past three months, but Arriva’s latest offer had “not met inflation rates” according to the GMB union.
Ninety-six per cent of Unite and GMB members voted for strike action over the offers.
Robbie Marnell, GMB Regional Organiser, said: “No worker should be struggling to cover their bills. But in the face of a cost of living crisis, Arriva needs to get real on its pay offers.
“Members have had enough after going the extra mile during Covid – working through the dangers of the pandemic – and now getting scant reward.
“The overwhelming strike mandate shows workers’ take on the miserly offer clearly. We have our deckchairs ready for the pickets.
“Hopefully the company will listen and get back around the table with a fair offer.”
Arriva wants workers to vote on the latest pay rise offer or 8.5 per cent. The annual inflation rate hit a 40-year high of 9.4 per cent last month.
Howard Farrall, North West and Wales Area Operating Director for Arriva UK Bus said: “It isn’t right that the Unions wouldn’t put this latest offer to their own members and allow them to exercise their democratic right to vote.
“The mandate for strikes arose from a ballot of Unite and GMB members on a previous pay offer, meaning strikes are continuing without the improved proposal being put to employees by the unions
He added: “We’re calling on Unite & GMB to abandon their plans for this damaging strike and to ballot their members on the new offer.”