Unite members on London buses have voted for industrial action over the Olympic bonus by a ratio of more than nine to one, on a 38% turnout. The ballot allows the union to name a date for a strike, but it has yet to do so. Unite said it was giving the 21 bus companies a final opportunity to consider the "landslide" ballot result before announcing possible strike dates early this week.
Unite official Peter Kavanagh said that negotiations had been going on for a year: "Our members are only asking for an extra £17 a day, which will just about buy you a pint of beer and a portion of fish and chips at the Olympics. Our members want the Games to be a success, but their patience has run out. Every single London transport worker will receive a reward to recognise their major contribution to this historic occasion except for bus workers. This dispute could be brought to an end now if the bus companies and TfL have the will to provide the relatively small amount of money compared to the billions being spent on the Games."
The bus operators argue that they cannot afford extra payments under the strict terms of their contracts with the mayor's transport authority. TfL has said the payments are a matter for operators.