28 May, the day after Solidarity went to press, was the last day of the RMT's ballot for strike action among 10,000 workers on London Underground and at Transport for London over pay, jobs and management bullying.
The union is reballoting after management got the first ballot — which produced 84% for a strike and 93% for action short of a strike — ruled illegal under the anti-union laws. Activists expect a strong yes vote, particularly after management helped us out by going round and trying to persuade everyone that the strike is a bad idea!
One highly positive aspect has been the creation of a strike committee, meeting weekly and drawing in representatives from the different grades — station staff, drivers, engineers and so on. The committee has discussed in detail how the strike should be run, feeding through its recommendations to the Executive. This process, inspired by the strike committee Metronet engineers organised during the 2007 strike which ended with their return to public ownership, is an advance for the RMT. We are also holding a mass meeting on the evening of 28 May to discuss the next steps.