London bus strikes: Abellio workers accept ‘greatly improved’ pay offer after months of strike action

Around 1,800 bus drivers have won a pay rise from Abellio bosses after more than 20 days of strike action

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A long-running pay dispute between Abellio bosses and workers has drawn to a close after union members accepted a “greatly improved” pay offer.

Members of the Unite union have accepted an offer which will increase the hourly rate for workers with over two years’ service to £18-per-hour, marking an 18% increase on the basic rate. It comes after months of industrial action and striking was held by workers.

Around 1,800 bus drivers were involved in the dispute. Unite said that workers had taken over 20 days of strike action in late 2022 to push for the pay rise.

It comes amid widespread industrial action in industries throughout the UK. This includes the NHS, education, railways and postal services.

What has Unite said about the pay offer?

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “This is an important pay victory. Workers have stood firm and with the support of their union, Unite, they have secured a richly deserved pay increase.

“Unite’s constant focus on the jobs, pay and conditions of our members is continuing to deliver increased pay awards for workers.”

What has Abellio said about resloving the pay dispute?

A spokesperson from Abellio London said: “We are delighted that our drivers have now accepted the substantial pay rise we put in place in early January. This will see an increase in pay for all of our drivers, with a base rate rise of as much as 18% for some grades, equating to around £100 per week increase.

“We are proud that this makes us one of the highest paying operators in London with a new starter salary of c£32,000 moving to c£40,000 after two years’ service. It was disappointing that strikes unnecessarily continued into February despite this fantastic offer being made at the beginning of the year.

“It brings to an end a difficult period of industrial action which has been tough for the company, our drivers and our customers. With the issue now settled we look forward to continuing to offer Londoners outstanding service on our routes while making innovations on sustainable public transport.”