Today’s announcement of a ballot by bus drivers to strike, possibly during the Olympics is, of course, not going to lead to a strike – instead it’s a negotiating tactic designed to force Boris to intervene (he’d rather not, presumably, since the bus companies that employ the drivers are private companies).  That much is clear from the Unite union’s statement:

Unite has urged the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson to demand that London’s bus operators end their silence and agree an Olympic payment for over 20,000 bus workers who are days away from voting on industrial action.

Unite has given seven days notice to 21 London bus operators of its intention to ballot bus workers for industrial action.

The failure of Boris Johnson to intervene and the bus operators’ refusal to meet with Unite means strike action could take place up to and during the Olympic Games, if there is no resolution.

Now, we know Boris doesn’t want to get involved, he’s never shown any interest in industrial relations, so what will he do?  On current second term form, sick it off onto someone else, probably Isabel Dedring, the new head of TfL as well as Deputy Mayor for Transport, who is probably the most powerful figure in London’s transport industry now.  Not bad.

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