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Bus Éireann services return to normal after three weeks of strike action

Bus Éireann Image copyright PA
Image caption The company is advising people to check the website before travelling on Friday but also over the Easter weekend

Bus Éireann services have returned to normal following three weeks of strike action over pay and conditions.

The company is advising people to check the website before travelling on Friday but also over the Easter weekend.

Unions lifted pickets on Thursday following a recommendation from the Labour Court aimed at resolving the dispute over cost-cutting plans.

Members will study the proposals and then vote.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Bus Éireann workers had been on strike since 24 March over pay cuts and work conditions

The result will be known in a number of weeks.

Bus Éireann staff had been on strike since 24 March in a dispute over cuts to pay and working conditions.

Management has said the changes are essential to avert the prospect of insolvency at the loss-making company.

The Labour Court has been considering the issues in the dispute after talks broke down at the Workplace Relations Commission earlier this week.

A court recommendation issued on Thursday stated that Bus Éireann told the Labour Court it was currently insolvent.

Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption The action caused great inconvenience for passengers

Labour Court chairman Kevin Foley described that assertion as being of the "gravest significance" for those who worked at the company and said the court had to give such a contention the most serious consideration.

The recommendation acknowledged it must also give the most serious consideration to the effect of the proposed changes on Bus Éireann employees.

It noted there was little point in making a recommendation that would ensure that the company went out of business, or that did not give staff an opportunity to maintain sustainable employment on fair and reasonable terms into the future.

Mr Foley made a number of recommendations including some pay cuts, voluntary redundancies, work practice reforms and depot closures in a bid to restore the financial viability of Bus Éireann.

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