Diane Abbott MP Questions Prime Minister On Tube Job Cuts

Hackney MP Diane Abbott has asked a question in parliament during Prime Ministers Questions enquiring how cutting more than 700 jobs will raise living standards for ordinary Londoners.

London Underground has announced that they plan for 950 jobs to go, with all ticket offices closing and most station staff having to reapply for jobs.

Abbott who is a member of the RMT parliamentary group said:

The Prime Minister will be aware that the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, proposes to close nearly every single ticket office on the London Underground network, with more than 700 jobs being lost. Does the Prime Minister believe that that is the way to raise living standards for ordinary Londoners?

Prime minister David Cameron, in a confusing answer suggested that 'permanent systems' need to be put in place to improve the service and suggested that the unions were against modernisation. What these permanent systems are was not explained - but presumably he didn't mean human beings, as nearly a thousand workers are to be cut with most others on stations having to reapply for jobs. Cameron also said we need an 'affordable' tube. Average tube fares have increased six times faster than wages under Tory mayor Boris Johnson's time in office, as revealed by the RMT. earlier this year.

In response to Abbott's question the Prime Minister's said:

The best way to help Londoners is to ensure that we have a safe and affordable tube, and that we use modern technology to deliver that. The conversation that the hon. Lady needs to have is with the trade union that has done so much damage to our underground. We ought to have no-strike deals on the underground and permanent systems that provide a good service.

Diane Abbott; Labour Mp for Hackney North and Stoke Newington is a member of the RMT Parliamentary group of Labour MPs, led by John McDonnell. The group has a track record of fighting for RMT members and the wider trade union movement, putting down early day motions, lobbying and hosting meetings and a number of other important activities.