Following the end of the strike by GDL, the German train drivers' union, DB has offered the union the option of restarting negotiations immediately. Talks would be possible as early as this weekend. Martin Seiler, Board Member for Human Resources and Legal Affairs, also called on the union to focus once more on the facts of the matter and stop its repeated attacks on political figures, the media and DB. "DB fully believes that we can find solutions quickly if we sit down at the negotiating table," said Seiler. "We are willing to do so."
Pay rises are just one example of the potential for a rapid resolution to the conflict. GDL has called for an increase of 3.2%. DB is offering 3.2% – just in a different timeframe. "Collective bargaining parties have to work together if they want to make progress," said Seiler. "Right now is the time for GDL to show it has the courage to finally come to the table and address the facts of the most serious economic crisis in our company's history."
DB believes there is no justification for fresh strike threats. "Threatening our passengers and rail operations with more industrial action in the current situation does nothing to find a way forward. It is completely unnecessary and disproportionate," said Seiler.
DB again emphasised that the Group had been badly hit by the pandemic and Germany's recent severe floods. Against this backdrop, Seiler once more pointed out that everyone at the company was contributing to getting through the current problems – only GDL was holding out. Contrary to the union's misleading claims, managers had also accepted substantial cutbacks, such as a pay freeze for this year. DB's managers saw their salaries drop considerably in 2020 when the variable component of their remuneration packages was cut by 50%. Nobody on the Management Board received any variable payout at all. DB now says it is time for movement from GDL.