Industrial Action Suspended But Our Fight To Save Jobs Continues

From RMT London Transport Region, Regional organiser John Leach

Dear Colleagues

You have nobody to thank but yourselves for what RMT and TSSA has achieved this week. Full details of the details of the deal hammered out at ACAS over Monday and Tuesday are given later in this bulletin. All I’ll say for now is that this is what we were asking for all along.

I am completely mindful of all the very hard work that has been put in by so many to make our industrial action the success it was. And I know that for those activists who represent members in areas less directly concerned with Booking Office closures, such as APD, the argument was all the more difficult to get over. But at the end of the day the argument was won, the industrial action devastated services and management were forced to make concessions that the Major of London only days before on the radio swore they would never make.

This is because at the end of the day our arguments are sound ones and our members across the whole of LUL realised that the attacks on Booking Offices were only the start. This is very much the thrust of this message because while we can quite rightly feel very proud of ourselves at this time, the old adage about winning battles but not as yet the war rings very true here. We must continue to talk to our members across the combine and be on our guard because we remain very much in a dispute situation

During the course of the ballot, it became known to us that a “Fit for the Future – Trains” was in the pipeline while horror stories emerging about the plans management have for the engineering side continued. I am not wishing to sound alarmist but the truth is that LUL is still looking to achieve its 94% of savings and will no doubt come up with one catastrophic plan after another rather than do the right thing and campaign for proper funding from their paymasters that London’s metro network deserves.

It is our job to make sure they do this and this starts now. Seven weeks of intensive negotiations stretch before us where we will fight for the retention of every job and booking office we can. And because we have forced management to effectively withdraw the HR1 and Section 188 Notice they served, we can engage in these negotiations without a gun to our head.

But at the same time we must continue to take our campaign much wider across LUL just as we have up to now. As a first step, please make every effort to attend the “Every Job Matters” meeting that the General Secretary has arranged for 18.00 HRS on TUESDAY 18TH FEBRUARY 2014, at the CONWAY HALL, RED LION SQUARE, WC1R 4RL.

Thank you for taking the time to read this message. As promised full details of the ACAS deal are given below.

With best wishes.

Yours sincerely

John Leach

The ACAS Deal

“1. London Underground would agree not to implement its Fit for the Future – Stations proposals, as set out in the HR1 and Section 188 Notice, until it has undertaken further meaningful and detailed discussions with the trades unions. This period of consultation would take place over the period Wednesday 12 February 2014 until week ending 4 April 2014. The Change Assurance Plan and Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) would develop during these discussions, which would take place at Company Council level, agreeing its own terms of reference.

2. During this period of discussion London Underground would put on hold all Voluntary Severance applications received and not request any new applications, and would also remove from its e-Zone all learning material associated with its Fit for the Future - Stations proposals.

3. In response to points 1 and 2, the trades unions would agree to enter into detailed discussion in respect of London Underground's Fit for the Future – Stations proposals. It is acknowledged that as a result of these discussions with the trades unions, the proposals could be subject to change.

4. During the above consultation period, London Underground would agree to discuss, amongst other things, a station-by-station review including ticket office closures which could result in some ticket offices remaining open, the proposed methods for stations' job selection, proposed job roles and proposed stations categorisation for Fit for the Future - Stations.

5. RMT and TSSA would withdraw all industrial action called to date in response to London Underground’s Fit for the Future – Stations proposals.

6. All parties would commit to return to ACAS on week ending 4 April 2014 to report on progress.”