Hong Kong (RAE - China) - Bus unions in pay rise dispute - bonuses to non-strikers (2011)

Bus drivers employed by various companies went on strike over pay increases in August. Bus drivers’ unions under the independent Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions (HKCTU) threatened to strike if their demands of a 2.2% wage increase were not met. Management of the New World First Bus and its subsidiary Citybus refused to meet the unions’ demand after securing the consent of the drivers in the pro-Beijing Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions (HKFTU) to the company’s offer of a 1.8% increase. Kowloon Motor Bus and Long Win refused to negotiate with the trade unions despite the threat of work-to-rule.

After two days, drivers employed by New World First Bus suspended their strike but did not rule out future industrial actions. Another three unions from Citybus, Kowloon Motor Bus and Long Win drivers also announced that they will suspend their industrial actions. Despite this around 100 drivers and maintenance staff of New World First Bus refused to return to work and marched to the transport secretary offices calling for the right to collective bargaining. Police warned the bus drivers that they were liable to prosecution because they had not applied for a permit.

A union spokesperson stated that the companies had coerced drivers on days off to come to work by paying bonuses of HKD 300 to those who helped to break the strike.

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