A GWENT MP is backing bus drivers and depot staff in an ongoing pay dispute which could see strikes later this month. 

Islwyn MP Chris Evans has offered his support to Stagecoach staff in their negotiations over pay and conditions.

Stagecoach has offered their Cwmbran, Blackwood and Brynmawr drivers an increase of up to 10.5 per cent, but union Unite Wales is asking for the £10.50 an hour wage.


Mr Evans said: "In the pandemic we clapped for our key workers, this included our bus drivers. Many hospital staff in my constituency rely on public transport to get to and from work. Without our bus drivers and depot staff continuing to work throughout the pandemic, our health care would have been put under even more strain.  

"That is why I must support Stagecoach staff in Blackwood and across Wales in their fight for a fair wage.  

"£10.50 is not an unrealistic wage, in fact workers for Newport Transport already receive this wage.  

"It is unacceptable for Stagecoach staff to have their paid breaks and sick pay removed from them.  

"We have seen the impact of shortages of HGV drivers we do not need to see what a shortage of bus drivers would do to our communities.  

"I have agreed to meet with Stagecoach to discuss this further, but I am clear that Stagecoach staff have my full support."

There is talk of strike action later this month, which could affect most of the services through Gwent. Customers are urged to check https://www.stagecoachbus.com/ before travel.