Christmas could be cancelled if you are relying on public transport this December following an overwhelming vote for industrial action by Cork bus drivers.
An industrial action ballot, instigated after disciplinary action was carried out on a Bus Eireann employee for speaking out when a driver was threatened with rape, was carried out in Cork.
93% of NBRU members in Cork a total of 340 members, voted in favour of industrial action in response to what is being called a breakdown in communication between management and staff in Cork.
The issue came to a head at Halloween when a driver was threatened with rape on the 220 service in Carrigaline and a Bus Eireann driver appeared on The Neil Prendeville Show in support of the driver.
Their appearance on the show saw the individual, who has worked for Bus Eireann for over 40 years, suspended from work for two days without pay and a warning.
National Bus and Rail Union (NBRU) General Secretary Dermot O`Leary said that he was surprised by the insecurity demonstrated by management in Cork.
“It is well known one of our representatives was disciplined for speaking out after the incident on Halloween “There have been phone calls with distasteful content and people have been over-reactive and abrasive and for that to come from me is really saying something.
“I know there has been a lot of structural change, but I suggest that they take it up with Dublin management, not people on the ground."
Mr O’Leary said that they are not looking for heads on a platter, they are looking to repair the relationship and they would be making it clear in the coming days the action that they will be taking in the run-up to Christmas.
“Work to rule comes in many forms, there is a lot more to the job than just driving a bus and if cooperation is withdrawn you could find there are issues with buses not being in the right place at the right time.”