Bus drivers went on strike in Tver

They aren’t afraid of being fired anymore

At 7th November, in anniversary of Great Socialist October Revolution, bus drivers in Tver had went on strike. Their conflict with employer, Intershina LLC, had festered for some time, and instead of finding common ground for negotianion, owner of company responded harshly. This time drivers patience ran out, and they’ve decided not to work. Reason for this decision was ultimatum from the owner for increasing daily profits by any means necessary. Capitalist tried to outsmart drivers by hiring scabs to no avail.

At morning drivers of 24th route refused to went to work, protesting against intiative to increase daily profits. Administration started desperately looking for a scabs, gathered few of them and send them on a route. It is unknown, how many safety regulations and of in-service instructions were violated by those scabs. According to passengers, scabs had no knowledge of original route. Moreover, in attempt to impress employer they tried to get as much passengers as possible, which created danger of being injured and increases possibility of accident.

As it was sad before, this is not a first clash between drivers and administration on this issue. Two weeks ago, drivers protested implementation of this initiative and refused to go working. Yet at first, administration came out victorious and quelled the dissent by firing two of the most resisting drivers. However, the problem never went away, and finally drivers just ran out of patience. They are not afraid of being fired anymore.

Over the last few years authorities of Tver region significantly cut spending on public transportation. This, as they call it “optimisation” led to closure of all tram depots in the city. And private bus companies exploited this opportunity, eager to squeeze profits out from both drivers and the passengers, which became one of the major reasons behind increasing number of accidents.

Invisible hand of a market again threatens lives of us and our families, trying to steal as much as possible from our pockets. The only way for passenger and drivers to get rid of such problems starts with unity and solidarity of working class against current economic order.