RMT salutes success of rock solid tube safety action and calls on London Underground to halt cuts and start serious talks

TUBE UNION RMT today saluted the solid support of members for the joint action with sister union TSSA on London Underground that successfully turned the spotlight on cuts to safe staffing levels and which has ratcheted up the pressure on Boris Johnson and his transport officials to drop their plans and start talking seriously about a safe and secure future for the tube network.

RMT said today that the next phase of action, an indefinite overtime ban for both unions, is already underway, is being fully supported and will begin to impact on the ability of tube management to maintain a full service. The next 24 hours of strike action will begin at 17:00 hours on 3rd October for ex-Metronet maintenance staff to be followed by all other staff grades (including drivers, signallers, station staff and managers) from 21:00 hours.

RMT has repeated its calls for meaningful talks to begin but has made it clear that it is impossible to have constructive discussions while cuts are already being smuggled in via the back door without any reference to agreed negotiating machinery.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:

“RMT and TSSA members have shown through their solid support for this week’s strike action, and the indefinite overtime ban, that they will not sit idly by while staffing levels are hacked to the bone and management turn the tube system into a death trap through their dash for cuts.

“LU bosses have admitted through the course of the strike that there are far worse cuts to come this autumn and we already have examples of fleet and track maintenance schedules being ripped apart.

“The LU claim that they are not planning to run unstaffed stations have been exposed as bogus. We already have examples of stations being run unstaffed on a regular basis in contravention of all safety practice and that scandal will escalate as management try and smuggle their cuts in via the back door though the non-filling of vacancies.

“Staffing levels are already at critical point and the talks must be reconvened on the basis that the backdoor introduction of cuts without negotiation and without agreement is brought to a halt. This on-going dispute is about the long-term future of a safe and secure tube system – these finance-driven, piecemeal cuts are a disaster waiting to happen.”

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