Geneva public transport strike set for Wednesday
Public transport workers in Geneva have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a one-day strike on Wednesday to protest over budget cuts and the elimination of 100 jobs.
The walkout means no buses or trams in the Geneva public transport network (TPG) will be operating on that day, the union for transport workers (SEV) announced on Monday.
The union said in a statement that it regretted the inconvenience caused to transport users “whom we know are attached to the TPG, but the strike was inevitable”.
The job action takes aim at the “austerity politics” of the Geneva cantonal government for 2015, as well as the service agreement signed between the canton and the TPG for 2015-2018.
That agreement calls for the elimination of 100 jobs, a situation that the union said is unacceptable.
“Today we are already short the equivalent of 130 driver positions to meet the current demand,” the SEV said.
As a result, employees are in a state of permanent stress and the absenteeism rate has reached record levels, it said.
Geneva voters in May approved a reduction in fares for the TPG, meaning single tickets are set to drop to three francs from 3.50 francs in December, while the cost of an annual pass will fall to 500 francs from 750 francs.
This has put the TPG under financial pressure because of the adverse impact this is expected to have on revenues.
The strike is set to start at 3am on Wednesday and will run for 24 hours.