Rail union announce more strike action

Waverley Station packed with commuters. Picture: Andrew O'Brien
Waverley Station packed with commuters. Picture: Andrew O'Brien

Rail union RMT has confirmed a fresh campaign of industrial action over the extension of Driver Only Operation and Driver Controlled operation on Scotrail.

The new phase of action follows a series of rock-solid strikes across Scotland which have not produced any movement on the core issues at the heart of the dispute. RMT has pressed hard for serious talks through ACAS but progress has been blocked at every turn by the company.

Despite a barrage of misinformation from Abellio/Scotrail the issue at the core of the dispute is safety and the safety-critical role of the guard.

The revised programme of strike action is now as follows:

* 00.01 hours to 23.59 hours Sunday, July 3 (as previously notified).

* 00.01 hours Sunday, July 10 and 23.59 hours Monday, July 11.

* 00.01 hours to 23.59 hours Thursday, July 14.

* 00.01 hours Saturday, July 16 2016 to 23.59 hours Sunday, July 17.

RMT’s policy is for no extension of DOO on any route or service and for the guard to be in full operational control of the power operated doors. Furthermore, RMT has made it clear that the union is totally opposed to any proposals for extending DOO, reducing or abolishing the safety role of the Conductor and reducing or abolishing the role of the Conductor in operation of the doors.

Mick Cash, RMT general secretary, said: “Despite a series of rock-solid strikes it is extraordinary that Abellio/Scotrail continue to ignore the strength of feeling amongst their staff over the extension of DOO. That disgraceful and cavalier approach to jobs and safety on Scotland’s railways now leaves us with no choice but to move to a new phase of industrial action.

“Our members on Scotrail stand determined and united in this fight for jobs and safety on Scotland’s rail services.

‎”The workforce know that any extension of DOO or DCO is a clear attack on our members hard earned terms and conditions. RMT members should not have to face the risk of their role and responsibilities being reduced and undermined.

“The workforce also know only too well that there is a very real threat to passengers of watering down and wiping out the safety critical role of the guard on these Scotrail services. ‎That is a lethal gamble with basic rail safety.

“The union remains available for serious and meaningful talks.”