For the time being, Deutsche Bahn has failed to avert the warning strike announced for Monday and Tuesday. According to her, there were talks with the railway and transport union (EVG) until late Thursday evening. Their chief negotiator Kristian Loroch spoke of "bogus offers" on Friday night. According to the current status, the warning strike will take place. However, the union had given the railway an ultimatum to approach them in the course of Friday "and to reflect," as Loroch told the German Press Agency. This ultimatum runs until 12.00 noon.
The EVG had called on the workers on Thursday for the third warning strike in the current collective bargaining round. The walkout is scheduled to last from Sunday evening, 22:00 p.m., to Tuesday evening, 24:00 p.m. The railway decided to completely stop long-distance traffic during this time. DB Regio will also hardly run a train.
The so-called dispatchers, who coordinate daily rail traffic on the entire German rail network, are also called upon to go on a warning strike. Therefore, railway companies that are not involved in the wage dispute are affected. Freight traffic is also likely to come to a standstill to a large extent.
Deutsche Bahn sees no reason for a warning strike
From the point of view of Deutsche Bahn (DB), there is no longer any reason for the warning strike. "In intensive talks until late Thursday evening," the EVG had been promised to comply with its demand for a mapping of the statutory minimum wage, which was raised months ago, the company announced around midnight. So far, around 2000,180 employees have only achieved the minimum wage through bonuses. In total, EVG is negotiating for 000,50 employees at DB and another 000,<> at other railway companies.
"We have fulfilled the demand for the minimum wage, now the EVG is in the word," emphasized DB Chief Human Resources Officer Martin Seiler. "The EDC must now keep its promise and cancel the 50-hour warning strike." EVG negotiator Loroch spoke of a "sham offer" from the railways. "In the end, after lengthy discussions, the employer put a solution option on the table that was worth discussing for us. After we started discussing them, he backed down." According to Loroch, however, talks had already come very far on Thursday.
Emergency operation required
The freight competitors called on Deutsche Bahn to organize an emergency operation. "The companies that are not in the collective bargaining dispute may not be indirectly harmed either intentionally or negligently," says a letter from the Network of European Railways to the rail infrastructure division DB Netz.
In principle, however, in view of a two-day warning strike on the railways, it is not to be expected that the German economy will be brought to its knees, according to the Freight Railway Association. It is true that there are branches of industry that make time-critical calculations, such as the automotive or petroleum industries. But even there, the warning strike does not last long enough for serious effects.
The chairman of the German Locomotive Drivers' Union (GDL), Claus Weselsky, considers it unnecessary for the railway to stop long-distance services for 50 hours. "The EVG is not so strongly organized at the network subsidiary DB Netz that Deutsche Bahn would be forced to stop rail traffic," Weselsky told the news portal "The Pioneer" (Friday).
GDL and EVG rival
The smaller GDL competes with the EVG for members and influence in the railway group. Weselsky said, "I'm sure there won't be a deal before we've made our demands." The GDL is negotiating new collective agreements for the train drivers and train crews it organises from late summer. On June 5, the GDL wants to officially announce its demands.
Despite repeated warning strikes, interest in the Deutschlandticket continues. According to a survey, almost a third of citizens want to buy it in the course of this year. Among the 14- to 29-year-olds, almost half (49 percent) want to buy the ticket, according to a survey by the consumer advice center, which was available to the German Press Agency. However, 30 percent of all respondents find the ticket too expensive. For 49 euros a month, it allows you to use local and regional transport nationwide.
"We need a cheaper offer for people with low incomes. There must be a social staggering," said Ramona Pop, board member of the Federation of German Consumer Organizations, the dpa. "The Deutschlandticket must also be attractive for families. A transferable family ticket must be offered and free transport of children up to the age of 14 must be regulated nationwide."
According to industry figures, around seven million people have now subscribed to the new Deutschlandticket. Among them are about two million people who did not have a public transport subscription before it was introduced.