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SNCB workers bring strike forward to 5 October

07:34 28/09/2022

A planned strike by SNCB rail workers in Belgium on 18 October has been moved forward by two weeks and will now happen next Wednesday (5 October).

Three trade unions representing SNCB staff have decided to strike earlier than first planned to "put pressure on the government", the unions said in a statement, as "budgets are now being decided, including the rail budget for the next 10 years".

The strike action will affect trains from 22.00 on Tuesday 4 October, until 22.00 on Wednesday 5 October.

A minimum level of service will run on some lines, with a revised timetable published early next week once it is known how many workers will take part in the strike action.

Unions are protesting about what they describe as deteriorating working conditions, insufficient recruitment and too many cancelled trains due to staff shortages.

"The trade unions point out the need for the government to provide sufficient financial resources for the Belgian railways," said a spokeswoman for HR Rail, the publicly owned firm that employs SNCB workers.

The federal government will begin its budget discussions this weekend and must submit its budget plans for EU approval by mid-October.

Written by The Bulletin