No rail strikes until 2023: EVG significantly improves collective agreement

Out of consideration for billions in losses by the railways during the Corona crisis, the larger railway union was satisfied with a moderate collective agreement. But because the train drivers are pushing through a lush deal with strikes, the EVG is now drawing the same level for its members.

After reaching an agreement with the GDL train drivers’ union, Deutsche Bahn also reached an agreement with the EVG union and thus finally concluded the current collective bargaining round. Rail strikes were ruled out until at least February 2023, the group announced in the afternoon. The EVG stated that peace in the company had been restored and a split in the workforce had been prevented.

Specifically, the union and employer agreed on corona subsidies in addition to the valid collective bargaining agreement: This year there are 600 euros for the employees, in the coming year another 500 euros will be added. In addition, “additional funds” have been made available for employee mobility. In addition, it was agreed to put the applicable remuneration structures to the test in the future. The regulations apply in the railway companies in which the EVG organizes the majority of the employees.

EVG and Bahn had actually already agreed on a collective agreement in September 2020 and agreed, among other things, 1.5 percent more wages – this still applies. With the train drivers’ union GDL, which had previously emphasized its demands with several strikes, the railway then reached an agreement in September of this year that went beyond the conclusion with the EVG. The EVG then entered into renegotiations with the Deutsche Bahn. Anyone who now compares the two degrees will “hardly find any differences,” explained the EVG. “It was and is important to us that there is no division within the railway family.” That has been achieved.

“Customers can plan safely again”

“This round of collective bargaining was extremely challenging due to the company’s economic crisis and the collective bargaining mix,” said Bahn Personnel Director Martin Seiler. Nevertheless, it was possible to conclude collective agreements that expressed appreciation for the employees and at the same time secured the future viability of the company. “Everyone involved – above all our customers – can now plan safely again,” explained Seiler.

Federal Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer described the collective bargaining agreement as good news for all train drivers after the long weeks of wage disputes. The agreement was good for the railway, “because it is calm here,” and good for the employees, because their work is valued, explained Scheuer. Now it is a matter of “bringing our railways forward and making climate-friendly railways the number one mode of transport”.

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