Scottish government should order rail firm to recognise union, says TSSA

The TSSA says the Scottish government should order rail operating company Abellio to recognise the union in all its workplaces.

The firm last week signed a recognition agreement with the union at its Fort William contact centre, but staff at contact centres in Robertson Street and Culzean House in Glasgow still have no access to union representatives at work.

And local managers are yet to reply to TSSA’s request to be able to publicise the benefits of membership of our union to them in their workplace.

TSSA Manuel Cortes says Abellio is guilty of breaching workers’ rights by failure to have standardised union recognition across its Scottish sites. And he is vexed by the company running a public service, taking huge public subsidy but not doing enough to comply with the SNP’s own public edict that encourages employers to allow their workforce to join unions in the interests of best industrial relations practice.


He said: “I want to congratulate workers in Fort William for joining our TSSA family. It is only through their strength and determination to belong to a union that we have won this important breakthrough in industrial relations. When 16 out of 24 staff join our union in one month, you know staff are feeling vulnerable at work and in need of representation.

“Abellio know this too, which is why it’s a disgrace they are still shutting us out of both their sites in Glasgow. I put management there on notice that they are morally obliged to grant us recognition rights. And if they can find their moral compass, we will use all means at our disposal to force them to do the right thing for its workers.

“But despite the worker led breakthrough in Fort William, it seems Scotland’s biggest subsidy junkie, Abellio, doesn’t get or is simply ignoring the First Minister’s memo about the Scottish Government valuing the work which trade unions do and wanting employers to work with them.

“Abellio’s ScotRail contract sees billions of Scottish taxpayers pounds going their way. Is it a lot to ask of Abellio to abide by the wishes of their Scottish paymaster in chief, Nicola Sturgeon, by allowing their staff their right to be represented by a union at the Glasgow sites? Frankly, if they don’t, the Scottish government ought to order them to do so.”

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