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Railroad workers go on strike across Holland after last-minute negotiations fail

The railroad stopped today as staff staged another strike over an ongoing dispute over wages and conditions.

As many as 16,000 members of the NS national railway company’s FNV Spoor, VVMC and CNV unions quit 24-hour work on Friday after a new offer from NS was rejected by union leaders who described it as “insufficient”.On Tuesday, the state-owned company that operates the Dutch rail infrastructure and most of its stations offer 5% salary increase and one-time bonus in the second half of 2022, and a possible 2.5% salary increase next year.

NS said in a statement, “Looking at all our options and our experience with past strike days, we believe there is no possibility of executing our schedule in a responsible, reliable and safe manner.” Unfortunately, this means that on Friday 9 September, NS trains will not run all day in the Netherlands.The R-net between Alphen aan den Rijn and Gouda will still work,” the company continued.

The strike also affected the Thalys, Eurostar and Benelux trains that carry passengers to the Netherlands. Public transport workers in the regions of Friesland, Groningen and Drenthe are also on strike. However, the Arriva service is not scaled down. RTV NorthArriva drivers and conductors are covered by a different collective agreement CAO than their NS colleagues.

The train exchange bus between Groningen and Leer runs as usual.

Some Qbuzz bus drivers who are members of the FNV union also support the industrial action. FNV director Edwin Kuiper expects bus service in the Northern states to drop by about half on Friday.

Bus operators warn that it is impossible to say in advance which routes will be cancelled. According to Qbuzz, trip planners can be less reliable than usual because carriers don’t know in advance who is working and who isn’t. “Plan your trip last minute and leave with plenty of time to spare. If you have the opportunity, I recommend choosing a different mode of transportation on strike days,” he said.

Talks between NS and trade unions are scheduled to resume on Saturday.

https://northerntimes.nl/rail-workers-strike-across-netherlands-as-last-ditch-talks-fail/ Railroad workers go on strike across Holland after last-minute negotiations fail

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