Strike Ballot For 'Boris Bike' Workers

TRANSPORT UNION RMT confirmed today that it is to ballot staff running the London “Boris Bike’s” for both strike action and action short of a strike over a range of grievances:

· The imposition of a 2% pay increase for 2013

· The imposition of shift change patterns

· The continuous bullying and harassment of members

· The company’s refusal to reach a formal agreement on travelling time or on travel allowances

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:

“Despite warnings that the so-called “Boris Bikes” are facing severe docking and capacity problems, the staff running the London cycle hire scheme are facing a bullying management who are imposing outrageous changes to conditions of service while denying our members a fair pay increase for a massively increasing workload.

“RMT will not stand aside and watch this group of key transport staff get kicked from pillar to post. The London Cycle Hire Scheme is much more than a vanity project and a publicity stunt for the London Mayor, it is now a valuable part of our transport system and the staff should be valued as such. The scheme has attracted global publicity but now risks collapsing into chaos through a massive under-investment in staff, bikes and docking stations.

“Just over a week ago there were warnings that the scheme was degenerating into a laughing stock because docking stations in key locations have no bikes and that the operators were facing a barrage of complaints from visitors to the City – RMT members will not be left to take the rap from a bullying management that refuses to take responsibility for its actions.

“We are sending out the clearest message to Serco Barclays, the scheme operators, by calling this ballot that we are serious about this fight for justice on pay and working conditions on the London cycle scheme and we remain available for talks.”