RMT announces new Southern strike date

rmt-southern-rail-parliament-demoRMT members on Southern Rail have announced a new strike date in their long-running dispute over drover-only trains.

They will be taking action for 24 hours from midnight on February 22nd after the union claims talks with bosses were “deliberately wrecked” by the company. The union says bosses made a mockery of the negotiating process and chose to completely ignore the safety issues at the heart of the matter.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: “The abject failure by Southern Rail in yesterday’s talks to take the safety issues seriously has left us with no option but to confirm further action. These disputes could have been settled if Southern/GTR had listened to our case and given the guarantee of a second-safety critical member of staff on their trains.

“Instead they have shifted the goal posts even further and have now created a ‘strike breakers’ charter’ where one of the numerous new conditions where trains can run driver-only is during industrial action.  That is simply scandalous and a measure of the betrayal of our members as a result of the TUC-brokered deal with Southern in the drivers’ dispute.

“The full detail of Southern’s plan is far worse than anyone could have anticipated. This is dire news, not just for staff, but for passengers who rightly demand a safe, reliable and accessible service. RMT will not walk away from the fight for a railway that puts public safety before private profit.

“It is now down to Southern/GTR to face up to their responsibilities and engage in genuine and serious talks that address our issues.”

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