Barcelona's bike-sharing service, Bicing, is facing a significant disruption as its employees have launched strike action to demand better wages that keep pace with the rising cost of living. The two major trade unions representing the workers, CGT and CCOO, have announced initial strike plans spanning three days, from November 14 to 16, as they champion several critical demands.
At the core of the strike is a call for a five-year agreement with the city. This agreement is aimed at ensuring that the wages of Bicing workers rise in tandem with increases in inflation, safeguarding their financial stability in an increasingly expensive urban environment. Moreover, the workers are advocating for more equitable compensation for weekend and holiday shifts, as well as the introduction of bonuses.
The strike is set to officially begin at 10:30 a.m. on November 14 at Placa Sant Jaume, a symbolic location in front of Barcelona City Hall. This initial demonstration underscores the workers' determination and their belief that dialogue with local authorities has fallen short. The strikes will continue on November 15 when the workers plan to protest outside the offices of B:SM, the public company responsible for operating the Bicing service. On the following day, November 16, they will return to Placa Sant Jaume to continue their demonstration.
The strike action is expected to disrupt the normal operations of Bicing, and CGT has advised regular users of the service to seek alternative means of transport during this period. The striking employees are emphasising that the current fleet of 7,000 bikes is insufficient to provide the level of service expected by Barcelona's residents and visitors. As well as increased bike availability, their demands also call for more effective maintenance to address the issue of broken bicycles.
Original article published on The Mayor website on 2 November 2023.
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