Deutsche Bahn to go on strike – economy

As early as next week, there could be massive flaws. Deutsche Bahn is making an urgent appeal to the GDL union not to paralyze traffic. But she sees no other way out.

Faced with the threat of massive railway strikes in Germany, Deutsche Bahn demands that the GDL train drivers’ union return to the negotiating table at the last minute. “The corona pandemic has hit us hard and left us with horrific damage,” said Martin Seiler, director of human resources at the Süddeutsche Zeitung. This year, Deutsche Bahn is threatened with a loss of two billion euros due to the pandemic. A strike strikes the group as well as the rail travelers at a devastating time. “Come to the negotiating table and have serious negotiations with us!” Warned Seiler, “then we will find solutions”. Deutsche Bahn is “ready to make concessions”.

But no solution is in sight. On the contrary. The tone intensifies. This week there is a poll, which the GDL plans to publish next Tuesday. GDL boss Weselsky assumes the strike will come. “We can sense that there is a large turnout in the strike vote. We expect the workforce to say ‘yes’ to the labor dispute. The mood of the workers is bad,” Weselsky said. , suggesting that his union was planning massive work stoppages. : “Von From the start, it was clear: we are not only interested in pin pricks. Labor disputes in the railways usually have a major impact on traffic. Over the past few years, you have repeatedly encountered millions of travelers and commuters.

In fact, it seemed like the sides were getting closer

The management of the railway sharply criticized the GDL on Thursday. “It would hit the railways and mobility hard in the country: on the one hand, because people are just starting to travel again,” says Seiler. “But now we also have a social obligation. We are consistently relevant for mobility in Germany.” The railway presented two tariff offers. Both were dismissed without negotiations. “This is not acceptable in the current situation,” says Seiler. The GDL rejected the allegations on Thursday. “The offers of the railway were not negotiable,” explains GDL boss Weselsky of the SZ. “They were far behind the public sector.” The employees are angry. “They no longer want to accept that they leave empty-handed and that management steals their pockets.”

Open detailed view

Stand firm: Claus Weselsky, President of the GDL Train Drivers’ Union.

(Photo: Annette Riedl / dpa)

Before the negotiations broke down, the two sides had actually drawn closer. Based on the civil service collective agreement, the GDL is calling for a 1.4% increase in income plus a corona bonus this year and an additional 1.8% next year. Globally, the railway had proposed a salary increase of this amount, but only from next year, in other stages and with a significantly shorter duration. Bahn and GDL are also arguing over pensions and other benefits.

The collective bargaining dispute is also a process as the application of the unified collective bargaining law could restrict the power of the GDL. The smaller of the two largest railway unions is fighting for its existence, for example with the demand to extend its influence to other parts of the company.

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