Rail union meets Fort Wil­liam cen­tre staff

The Oban Times - - News -

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.’

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