Malinauskas Labor Government must step in and handle train drivers’ strikeMalinauskas Labor Government must step in and handle train drivers’ strike

Wednesday 17 April, 2024

The Opposition is calling out weasel attempts by the Malinauskas Labor Government to separate itself from the ongoing – and costly – train drivers’ strike which is anticipated to cause continued havoc for commuters today.

Today, up to 200 train drivers are expected to strike from 3pm – 7pm as they negotiate new pay conditions.

Yesterday, some commuters were totally unaware of the strike with many passengers left stranded at train stations with no transport to crucial medical appointments or work.

While Keolis Downer is currently contracted to operate Adelaide’s train network, the Malinauskas Labor Government will end this contract in 2025. This means any pay deal agreed now will be paid for by South Australian taxpayers.

Shadow Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Vincent Tarzia, said the Malinauskas Labor Government must intervene to save commuters from further headaches.

“Ultimately, whatever new pay deal is struck for train drivers, it’s going to become the responsibility of South Australian taxpayers to carry,” Mr Tarzia said.

“We know Labor ripped up the Keolis Downer contract, and that’s why it’s baffling for Peter Malinauskas and Tom Koutsantonis to wipe their hands of these important contract negotiations when 2025 is just around the corner.

“Peter Malinauskas and Tom Koutsantonis should be intervening to ensure the best and fairest deal is reached with South Australian public transport users as the priority.

“This needs to be done as quickly as possible so we don’t have a situation where commuters are waiting at stations for trains that just aren’t coming.

“This problem can be solved and is avoidable in the future if Peter Malinauskas and Tom Koutsantonis act on behalf of South Australians and do the right thing.”

The Rail, Tram and Bus Union is requesting a 20 per cent pay rise over four years and have refused an offer of 14.7 per cent from Keolis Downer.