Lisbon, 11 Aug 2019 (Lusa) – The Association of Freight Transporters accuses unions of not meeting the deadline for sending workers to the minimum service levels.

In a statement issued this morning, the National Association of Public Road Hauliers (ANTRAM) indicates that unions should have designated workers to perform minimum services up to 24 hours before the strike begins, which starts at Monday.

“This obligation was breached by the unions once again, contrary to what they said they would do throughout the media during yesterday [Saturday],” writes ANTRAM, in a note sent by André Matias de Almeida, lawyer and Association’s spokesperson.

The Independent Freight Drivers Union (SIMM) and the National Hazardous Goods Drivers Union (SNMMP) decided on Saturday to continue the strike starting indefinitely Monday after a joint plenary session.

For ANTRAM, trade unionists are “doing everything” so that minimum services are NOT met.

“It would be much more efficient for companies to comply if trade unions immediately indicated the workers who were going to do it, as this would contribute to less tension between employers and workers, as companies will now refer workers”, refers to ANTRAM’s note.

Thus, transport companies will assign workers to minimum services, hoping that “it will be possible to contact workers who will be assigned to minimum services”.

The government has enacted minimum services of between 50% and 100%, rationed fuel supplies and declared an energy crisis until 11:59 pm on 21 August, which implies “exceptional measures” to minimize the effects of the shutdown and ensure service provision for essential services such as security forces and medical emergency.