Published on : Thursday, December 14, 2017
The two 24 hour strikes are planned for New Year’s Eve and December 27, 2017.
The companies involved in the strikes are South Western Railway and Greater Anglia, are the same firms who were this week revealed to have denied customers the chance to buy cheap tickets for the Christmas break.
The members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union on South Western Railway will walk out for 24 hours on December 31 and on Greater Anglia on December 27 in their ongoing dispute over the role of guards.
It became the news after RMT met Transport Secretary Chris Grayling in a bid to decide and solve the dispute, but said there were “contradictory messages and confusion” from the minister and his department.
The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) Union claims that it was told that the Government is not opposed to a second person on trains and that it was up to the union and employers to reach an agreement and was offered further talks to discuss its apprehensions about driver-only trains.
The RMT general secretary Mick Cash said that within an hour of the meeting finishing, he received a “contradictory letter” from Mr Grayling asking that the union accepts the principle of driver-controlled operation.
There are similar disputes are affecting Southern Railways, Merseyrail and Arriva Rail North. A strike will be held on Merseyrail on December 22. The Rail minister Paul Maynard has called on the unions to call off the strikes.
This dispute is not about jobs or safety. Employees have been guaranteed jobs and salaries, and driver-controlled trains have been used in the United Kingdom for more than 30 years, with the independent rail regulator confirming they are safe.