RTBU slams NSW government as all services across city suspended amid industrial action

Rail, Tram and Bus Union NSW secretary Alex Claassens says train workers have been locked out by the government.

“The ball is in their court, our members are ready to go to work. As soon as the government decides they want to run trains, we can run them,” Mr Claassens told the Herald.

“It’s Transport for NSW and the government’s call to shut down the network.”

RTBU secretary Alex Claassens.

RTBU secretary Alex Claassens.Credit:Wolter Peeters

He said the dispute was largely centred on the union’s altered work schedule.

“I went to bed last night expecting trains to be running this morning,” Mr Claassens said. “It’s very disappointing.”

In a statement posted to Facebook last night, the RTBU NSW branch said its “altered working ban for train crew will go ahead as planned”.

“There are plenty of ways that Sydney and NSW Trains could accommodate this, but at this stage, it is unclear what their plans are,” the 8pm post reads.

“Don’t be confused about management’s communication on this ban, it is still 100 per cent on, however, we have told them that if there is a major incident or safety issue to call the union, and we would work to clear the risk.”

In a further post this morning, the RTBU stressed “the government has cancelled the trains” in “retaliation” to the union’s partial work ban.

“This is not a strike. Our members are at work, ready to work, and have been all night,” it said.

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