Sadiq Khan, a frontrunner for the Labour selection for the 2016 Mayoral race, has today pledged to ease London commuter headaches by tackling one of the major causes of industrial conflict across the London bus network.
Industrial relations between bus drivers and TfL have fallen to an all time low and resulted in misery for millions of travellers, because of big discrepancies between pay for drivers covering the same route.
Sadiq Khan, previously a Minister for Transport between 2009 and 2010, will introduce a single wage structure across the bus network to end this unfairness, and reduce the likelihood of industrial conflict that results from the present system.
He has reviewed the current situation where 18 different bus companies offer 18 different pay deals, resulting in a staggering 80 different rates of pay. He has concluded that this has been a cause of much of the industrial conflict on London’s buses in recent years, resulting in scores of working days lost, significantly affecting passengers in London.
As a result Sadiq Khan has today announced that if he is elected Mayor he will ensure, through the contracts issued by TfL, that a single wage structure will be introduced across the bus network. This will mean whatever bus you drive on whatever route, for whichever company, drivers will receive the same basic pay.
Commenting on his major policy initiative Sadiq Khan said: "People who use the bus will probably be puzzled to know that even when they pay the same fare, bus drivers don't get the same pay. It doesn't make sense there are 80 different rates of pay and one bus fare.
"This has been a cause of resentment among bus drivers for some time and has lead to industrial action. In adopting this new ‘one rate for all’ wage structure, we will remove one of the central reasons for industrial disputes in recent years.
"This will be good for Londoners who rely on our brilliant bus service and good for the drivers too.”
Today’s announcement was supported by Andrew Bosi, Chief Executive of The Capital Transport Campaign, who said: “Anything that reduces the risk of industrial action has to be a good thing for passengers. What is being proposed here would be good for all those concerned; passengers, drivers and the operating companies."
Notes to Editors
1. The new London bus wage structure will be rolled out over 3 years as contracts on routes come up for renewal.
2. Sadiq will make it a criteria of any contract award to a bus operating company that they must adopt the London bus single wage structure to win the contract.