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Public transport workers win big in Bulgaria

news 12 Apr 2019

After months of campaigning, bus and tram drivers at the Sofia Electric Transport and Sofia Bus Transport companies have won their biggest ever pay rise, ranging between 25 and 28 percent, to align wages in the two companies.  

The workers carried out negotiations through their unions, the Federation of Transport Trade Unions in Bulgaria (FTTUB) and the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Bulgaria (CITUB).  

FTTUB president Ekaterina Yordanova said: "While others were making politics at the expense of transport workers, we have achieved a real increase in earnings and will continue the negotiations to improve working conditions and limit overtime work.  

"We still have to adopt the framework for the next three years, which will cover all employees of the four companies running Sofia's public transport, and will bring three consecutive 10 percent increases of all salaries within the companies until 2022."

The FTTUB insisted that all workers - drivers, conductor, maintenance, cleaning and administration personnel - should be included in the new pay deal.  

The federation is continuing talks with the Sofia municipality and the companies’ management over key issues: 

  • legislation to criminalize aggression towards public transport workers 

  • strategies to make public transport more attractive to passengers and workers 

ITF urban transport chair John Mark Mwanika added: “One of the main aims of the ITF’s Our Public Transport programme is to increase the industrial power of workers and their unions in urban transport. The FTTUB have shown us all how this can be done – by workers sticking together across modes of public transport and across job roles.” 

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