Rail union meets Fort William centre staff
THE union Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) took its first step inside Abellio’s Fort William call centre last week.
Last week The Oban Times reported TSSA had ‘ won a battle’ with the Dutch rail company over the rights of its workers in Scotland to belong to a union. TSSA organisers were granted access to the Fort William-based national call centre where at least 57 employees have, until now, been denied union rights since Abellio took over the ScotRail franchise in 2015.
It came after TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes spoke to the media about a lack of response to requests from TSSA to be given access to Fort William employees.
Following the visit on Thursday February 16, Mr Cortes said: ‘It may have taken us the best part of a year to get Abellio to open up the doors to us at their Fort William call centre but, when they did, they made us very welcome.
‘Our Scottish organisers, Liz Warren- Corney and Gemma Welsh, report a productive visit. The management team at Fort William were very supportive of their staff being allowed to exercise their right to join a union. They did everything they could to make the job of our organisers an easy and friendly one. I want to thank them for their hospitality, which is appreciated.’
An Abellio spokesperson said: ‘ We have constructive relationships with all the rail unions, including TSSA, and as soon as we became aware of their desire to organise a visit to our Fort William site this was organised for last Thursday.’