Posted: Tue 17th Jan 2023

Updated: Tue 17th Jan

Rail union announces two strike dates in February after pay offer rejected

North Wales news and information

Rail workers will have announced two days of industrial action next month. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

Members of ASLEF will stage a walkout on Wednesday 1 and Friday 3 February after the union rejected a pay offer. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, said the proposal “is not and could not ever be acceptable”, adding that the union is willing to “engage in further discussions within the process that we previously agreed.” ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

The strike dates will take place the same week as teachers and nursing staff stage industrial action. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

The companies affected include: ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

  • Avanti West Coast; Chiltern Railways
  • CrossCountry
  • East Midlands Railway
  • Great Western Railway
  • Greater Anglia
  • GTR Great Northern Thameslink
  • London North Eastern Railway
  • Northern Trains; Southeastern
  • Southern/Gatwick Express
  • South Western Railway (depot drivers only)
  • SWR Island Line
  • TransPennine Express
  • West Midlands Trains

Mick Whelan: “It’s now clear to our members, and to the public, that this was never about reform or modernisation but an attempt to get hundreds of millions of pounds of productivity for a 20% pay cut while taking away any hope of the union having any say in the future. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“Irreparable harm has been done to the integrity of the negotiating process and the future ability to negotiate an appropriate way forward, but we make ourselves available anyway. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“Not only is the offer a real-terms pay cut, with inflation running north of 10%, but it came with so many conditions attached that it was clearly unacceptable. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“They want to rip up our terms and conditions in return for a real-terms pay cut. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“It was clearly a rushed offer, made just before our meeting with the minister, and not one, it seems to me, that was designed to be accepted. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“Our members at these companies have not had an increase since 2019, despite soaring inflation, and it is time the companies – encouraged, perhaps, by the government – sat down with us and got serious. ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​

“That is the way – and the only way – to end this dispute.” ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​ ‌​‌‌​​​‌‍‌​‌​‌​​​



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