Melbourne Train Workers Strike To Coincide With PAX Aus Weekend [Updated]

Melbourne Train Workers Strike To Coincide With PAX Aus Weekend [Updated]

Update 2:38 PM AEST, September 27, 2023: In a response to Kotaku Australia, ReedPop has issued the following guidance regarding the Friday of PAX Australia 2023:

“The PAX Aus team is aware of the proposed Metro train strikes in Melbourne on Friday, October 6th from 10am – 2pm – the first day of PAX Aus 2023.

With this in mind, we encourage all attendees planning to attend PAX Aus on Friday to ensure that they plan ahead and make alternative travel arrangements to minimise impacts where possible.

Additionally, we want to remind anyone that did not receive their badge by mail, that badge pick up is available at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre (MCEC) on Wednesday 4th October from 12pm-5pm and Thursday 5th October from 10am to 8pm. We highly encourage people to pick up their badges ahead of time.

The PAX Aus team is also working with the MCEC to ensure the safety and security of our visitors and expedite queueing times so that everyone can gain access to PAX Aus as quickly and efficiently as possible.

We will make further announcements should there be any more developments.”

Original story follows below.

Metro Trains workers in Melbourne have threatened to strike in early October in relation to an ongoing pay dispute. According to The Age, the Rail, Train and Bus Union notified Metro Trains of its intention to strike between 10am and 2pm on Friday, October 6 and again on Wednesday, October 11.

Those of you playing along at home may note: Friday, October 6 is the first day of PAX Aus, a day a great many punters across the city will be relying on public transport to get to the show. The good news is that, in the event a strike does occur, Saturday and Sunday transport will be unaffected.

The purpose of this piece is not to shame public transport workers for trying to get a better deal. As Melburnians well know, they bloody deserve it. Rather, this is a PSA to everyone heading to PAX on that Friday to prepare for a scenario where it could be quite difficult to get to the show.

According to The Age, staff affected by any strike action will be rail signallers, train controllers, stations and customer service staff, and authorised officers. This means that buses and trams will likely be unaffected, so you will have options there, though prepare for crowding. Those relying on the trains, however, will need to seek alternate means of transportation. One imagines Metro Trains will put replacement buses on at each railway station as well, but with every train line in the city out of action, it will be chaos.

Of course, the Union has given Metro Trains a full two weeks notice in the hope that a resolution is forthcoming. With luck, Metro will help these workers out, and everyone can get to PAX Aus on time.

It is not yet clear if the PAX Australia convention will have specific guidance for attendees on the day, should the strike action proceed. Kotaku Australia has reached out to PAX Australia organisers ReedPop for comment. We’ll update this piece when it responds. We will also update this piece should the story develop toward a resolution or guaranteed strike action so you can plan your Friday ahead of time.

Image: PAX Aus, Sam Sejvan, iStock, Kotaku Australia

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