Rail unions

Fantasy Union of Rail and Transport Workers

What kind of union do we need? There are strengths and weaknesses in our current union set-up. Union officials will often have you believe that things can only be done the way they are done, because ... well, because they have always been done that way. We do not agree. We have several criticisms of the existing rail unions, so it is only fair that we set out in more positive terms what our ideal union might look like. Let's call it the Fantasy Union of Rail and Transport Workers (FURT). Some of the good things about this fantasy union could be put in place by changes in rules and ways of...

Strike on Tyne and Wear!

Workers in both RMT and Unite on the Tyne and Wear Metro will strike from 28-30 June and 1-4 July, with an overtime ban commencing from 5 July.

An RMT statement says: "Last year the cash-rich Stadler outfit secured a £300 million contract to build 42 new Metro trains, rebuild the Gosforth depot...

Caledonian Sleeper Strikes Again

Workers on the Caledonian Sleeper will stage an eleven-day strike from 15 June against the company's threat to impose a pay freeze. With the employer already showing scant regard for staff welfare, the refusal to increase pay during these difficult times adds insult to injury. It is little wonder...

New Off The Rails print issue - out now! (June 2021)

The new print issue of Off The Rails leads on the government's Williams rail review, explaining how 'Great British Railways' will not be great for workers, and calling for the fightback to start now. There are also articles about track worker safety, and disputes on East Midlands Railway, Scotrail and the Caledonian Sleeper, plus a listing of other items on the OTR blog. Click on the attachment to download it!

Two Tube strike ballots close 29 June

Tube union RMT has launched two parallel ballots of its driver members across London Underground, both closing on 29 June. One ballot is for action to win reinstatement for Gary Carney, a union rep sacked after allegedly “avoiding” a drugs and alcohol test about which he was not informed. Drivers on Gary’s line, the Central line, were due to strike on 6 May, but strikes were suspended to allow further talks. After London Underground upheld the sacking, the ballot has been widened to include all drivers across the Tube. The other ballot is for action against so-called “grade consolidation” for...

For a real fight on track worker safety

It's great that RMT is developing a strategy for improving track worker safety. RMT has emailed (see below) to tell us to say it is sending a document about improving lineside safety to top safety people at Network Rail, asking for a meeting to discuss it.

Off the Rails thinks it would be great...

Train guards to strike

After a 20 month delay, due to Covid and a change of franchisee, guards on East Midlands Railway will resume their fight against unfair starter contracts and rostering which busts terms and conditions with three strikes on consecutive Sundays starting on 16 May, the first day of the new timetable. Reps have paid close attention to the strike days that members wanted, with the majority being in favour of consecutive Sunday strikes rather than Saturdays, weekdays, or more than single days of action per week. Planning has also been done to further pressurise management if they don’t see sense...

Continuing the EMT strike!

After a 20 month delay, due to Covid and a change of franchisee, guards on East Midlands Railway will resume their fight against unfair starter contracts and T&C busting rostering with 3 strikes on consecutive Sundays starting on May 16th, the first day of the new timetable.

Reps have paid close...

Stitch up over Merseyrail drivers' pay?

On 13 April the ASLEF Executive Committee met to hear reports from the Merseyrail Drivers' Company Council and the District 3 Full Time Officer Andy Hourigan.

Merseyrail's pay 'offer' to drivers for 2021 was 0% on pay, and a stipulation that any changes to Terms and Conditions negotiated needed...

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