Every Driver Must Defend The Job

Every driver on the combine needs to get ready to defend the job. LU's plans to slash staffing on stations will effect every grade in every function and will impact directly on our ability to do our job safely and professionally.

Station staff are critical to our work and are part and parcel of our safety procedures on a daily basis. LU's proposal to de-staff the stations and introduce mobile supervisors with ipads will massively hamper our ability to deal with incidents. Serious incidents such as one-unders and SPADs will be a lottery as to whether you get the support you need. And there will be knock-on consequences of this sharp reduction of safety-critical support: daily late running, short meal breaks and chronic overcrowding. Assaults on drivers will increase.

But LU's plans to attack the job are not just limited to de-staffing stations. The company also wants to de-staff trains. RMT wrote to LU seeking assurances on the much publicised 'driverless trains' issue. London Underground refused point blank to give us the assurances we need. Management stated in black and white that they will design, plan and commission any train they see fit. RMT's position is clear: any new stock must have a cab on the front. That's what we want and so do the public. We cannot allow LU to commission a train without a cab because then it will be too late to campaign and stop the begining of the end of the driver grade. Mike Brown's 'promise' that any driver who wishes can remain a driver until the end of their career is not worth the breath that was wasted when the measley words came out of his mouth. If we allow LU to commission trains without cabs, if we allow it to begin that is the end of our grade for existing drivers and the next generation. Already LU has begun a trial on the Central line of automatic 'obstruction detection equipment', a preparatory step for driverless trains. Meanwhile, right now, train building company Seimens is showcasing a bespoke driverless train for the Tube.

Every driver and every grade across the job must resist LU's proposals. They represent a sea change to our culture at work, our culture of safety and our ability to provide a public service for London's travelling public.

All drivers - defend our job!

RMT Trains Functional Council