The railway employees board and the Histadrut Labor
Federation on Sunday night asked the National Labor Court to allow them
to begin a strike immediately over Israel Railways's decision to
outsource maintenance services to a foreign company.
Sunday, Israel Railways signed an agreement with Canadian company
Bombardier Transportation to provide maintenance for 130 train cars.Last week
, train workers began a strike over the issue, but the National Labor Court issued an injunction against the action.
the signing of the deal on Sunday, the railway employees board stated
that Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz had "declared war not only on
railway workers, but against all organized labor." The board called on
the National Labor Court to cancel the maintenance agreement with
"We will continue the struggle against the
introduction of contract workers with all available means," the
Histadrut said in a statement Monday morning. "We will not be deterred
by the attempt force the workers' hand with heavy-handed [tactics]."
said in an interview with Channel One on Sunday that the number of
train cars operating in the country would soon be doubled, and therefore
outsourcing maintenance work was unavoidable. He vowed not to fire a
single railway worker in the next twenty years and to raise the train
employees' salaries by 20 percent.
The National Labor Court was scheduled to discuss the railway employees' request to strike on Sunday morning.