Summer train strikes may be unavoidable as labor union rejects NS final offer
The odds of a strike called by the employees of railway company NS are rapidly increasing. The FNV labor union rejected the latest wage offer from the national railway company on Friday.
The union will still submit the offer to its members, along with the immediate advice that members reject the deal. In addition, the union will immediately ask its supporters whether there is any willingness to begin industrial actions.
The four trade unions, FNV, CNV, VVMC and VHS, previously indicated that they want full compensation as a result of corresponding price increases. The unions therefore want a wage increase of 8.5 percent in the first year of a new deal.
The NS increased its offer from 7.5 percent to 8 percent. However, the offer from the train operator spreads the wage hike over a two and a half year period.
"There is still a huge gap," said FNV. The members of FNV have until August 1 to respond to the offer. According to a spokesperson for FNV, the outcome is predictable. "You can count on us to be ready in August."
The NS employs approximately 20,000 people. Discussions on a new collective labor agreement have been ongoing since mid-May. The NS said it had not formally heard anything from the union on Friday evening. Once that happens, a response will be sent to the union.
Reporting by ANP