More strike action hits Northern services
RMT members went on strike on Northern on September 1, and were due to take further industrial action on September 8 (after this issue of RAIL went to press).
Further action is planned for September 15/22/29, over what the union claims is the future role of guards and the extension of Driver Only Operation. It claimed Northern refused to engage in serious and meaningful talks.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “German-owned Northern Rail want to run nearly half a million trains a year without a safety-critical guard on board, in a move that would wreck both safety and access to services. They should listen to their front-line staff and pull back from that plan immediately.”
Northern Deputy Managing Director Richard Allan said: “The RMT’s announcement of three more strike days - less than a week since they agreed to ACAS talks - is incredibly frustrating and disappointing.
“We’re trying to fix this dispute. Since the RMT agreed to reconvene the joint steering committee meetings and ACAS mediated talks, we are in the midst of arranging dates to meet. We have again urged the union to suspend any planned strikes. Instead, they have chosen to strike on every Saturday in September.”