SIPTU members in Bus Éireann have called upon the Minister for Transport, Shane Ross, to stop dodging his responsibilities to both transport workers and the travelling public and establish a process that can effectively deal with the issues in the company that have led to an indefinite strike by workers. SIPTU Sector Organiser, Willie Noone, said: “The Minister is due to appear before the Joint Oireachtas Committee for Transport, Tourism and Sport today (Wednesday, 29th March) at 1.30 p.m. He must use this opportunity to make clear he will stop dodging his responsibilities to both workers and the travelling public and make an effective intervention in the Bus Éireann dispute which has resulted in severe inconvenience to tens of thousands of people. “The current strike action is in response to a management attempt to force through changes to workers’ terms and conditions of employment without any agreement. The changes, which management stated it intended to immediately implement in a letter to workers on 22nd March, would have resulted in a loss of earnings of up 30% for many Bus Éireann workers.” He added: “SIPTU representatives want to engage in meaningful negotiations concerning far-reaching change and improvements in the public bus network. However, for these talks to be effective the Minister must establish a process that allows for direct input from the National Transport Authority and the Department of Transport as well as management and workers’ representatives. “The best place for these talks to take place is in the Workplace Relations Commission or another body capable of overseeing an agreement on a just and fair solution to this dispute. SIPTU members in Bus Éireann want a solution to the current dispute and to return to work as soon as possible.”