Some locomotive depots continue sit-down strike, Ukrzaliznytsia denies damage
KYIV. May 23 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Over 10 locomotive depots would continue a sit-down strike, which was recently conducted at enterprises of public joint-stock company Ukrzaliznytsia over troubles with rolling stock, until their claims are discussed, a member of the committee of the primary trade union organization entitle the Independent Trade Union of Railway Workers of Ukraine of the Darnytsia locomotive depot (Kyiv) Yevhen Podurazhny has said.
"The main claims of railway workers is sticking to proper fire safety, labor safety measures, improvement of labor conditions, increase of salaries to all railway workers to at least UAH 8,000, upgrade and modernization of the existing locomotive fleet of Ukrzaliznytsia," he said at a press conference at Interfax-Ukraine.
Podurazhny said that the protect strike lasts for the ninth day and over 10 depots joined it.
"Due to the fact that the major part of Ukrzaliznytsia's rolling stock has been exhausted, and its operation in this state is almost impossible, the observation of rules actually paralyzed operation of locomotive depots in Kremenchuk, Poltava, Zaporizhia, Kryvy Rih, Darnytsia and partially in Korosten, Polohy and other towns. Due to malfunction of locomotives cargo in these depots is not transported at all or transported partially," Chairman of the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Ukraine Mykhailo Volynets said.
He said that railway workers were ready to discuss existing problems with representatives of Ukrzaliznytsia and offer ways how to solve them.
"We want to sit down at the negotiating table, but Ukrzaliznytsia's top managers ignore all our initiatives," Volynets said.
He said that railway workers do not plan to stop the strike until the constructive dialog with Ukrzaliznytsia's top managers and Infrastructure Ministry's officials is started.
The press service of Ukrzaliznytsia told Interfax-Ukraine that the working process was not stopped. All cargo is transported in full thanks to the replacement of teams, and it is incorrect to speak about losses due to the strike.
Director for Economy and Finances at Ukrzaliznytsia Andriy Riazentsev said that in the past two years Ukrzaliznytsia increased investment, including in the upgrade of rolling stock.
"Total investment in 2016 was UAH 6.9 billion, in 2017 – UAH 10.9 billion and this year it is planned to invest UAH 26.9 billion. Average salary at Ukrzaliznytsia is UAH 10,000, and the minimum wage is UAH 4,000," he told Interfax-Ukraine.
According to Ukrzaliznytsia, two depots are taking part in the strike.
"We know about two depots participating in the strike. We cannot confirm information presented at the press conference. The rest of the depots are operating stably, and the issue with Kryvy Rih and Kremenchuk was settled in two days," he said.