The Daily Telegraph - Business

Tube drivers plan August walk-out over ditching of dedicated night train workers

- By Oliver Gill

THOUSANDS of train drivers in the capital plan to go on strike next month over the axing of night Tube operators.

The RMT union said staff will walk out over four days in August, putting Sadiq Khan’s hopes of balancing Transport for London’s books in doubt.

The London mayor, who is also chairman of TfL, needs passengers to return to public transport to help to fill a multibilli­on-pound hole in the authority’s budget.

TfL is twice as dependent on fare income as its counterpar­ts abroad.

About 70p in every pound spent on running services across the capital comes from fares, compared with roughly 36pc in the likes of New York and Paris.

Strike action not only leads to lost revenue on the days the walkouts take place, but undermines public confidence in the Tube’s reliabilit­y.

London Undergroun­d’s decision to cull dedicated night Tube drivers will lead to 200 job losses and force drivers who work during the daytime to clock on for overnight shifts.

Strikes are scheduled for 24 hours from noon on August 3, 5, 24 and 26.

Mick Lynch, the RMT general secretary, said: “London Undergroun­d’s pro- posals to rip up an agreement that protects 3,000 Tube drivers’ work life balance has caused uproar in the depots amongst drivers. This breach of trust by an out-of-touch management abolishes the part time jobs of workers – mainly women – who want them.

“This is the thanks that Tube drivers have been given for keeping the service running through the Covid pandemic. This is a blatant attempt to now use that pandemic to start bulldozing through a savage programme of cuts.”

TfL did not respond to requests for comment.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United Kingdom