Do you agree with Christmas rail strikes by train staff? Have your say below

Staff with the RMT union have voted to go out on strike in the run up and shortly after Christmas as they battle get better pay and conditions. The Rail, Martime and Transport Workers union announced a new series of strikes on Tuesday (November 22) as its battle with rail companies shows no signs of abating.

More than 40,000 members across the rail network and from 14 train operating companies will walk out in protest in four 48-hour strikes on December 12 and 14, 16 and 17 and on January 3 and 4 and 6 and 7. In addition, staff will be banned from doing overtime from Sunday, December 18 to Monday, January 2.

In total workers will be taking industrial action over four weeks. The latest strikes are on top of eight days of walkouts already taken since June in the long-running dispute.

RMT general secretary, Mick Lynch, said: “This latest round of strikes will show how important our members are to the running of this country and will send a clear message that we want a good deal on job security, pay and conditions for our people. We have been reasonable, but it is impossible to find a negotiated settlement when the dead hand of government is presiding over these talks.

“The employers are in disarray and saying different things to different people sometimes at the same time. This whole process has become a farce that only the new Secretary of State can resolve. When I meet him later this week, I will deliver that message.

“In the meantime, our message to the public is we are sorry to inconvenience you, but we urge you to direct your anger and frustration at the government and railway employers during this latest phase of action. Working people across our class need a pay rise and we are determined to win that for our members in RMT.” Mr Lynch is set to meet new Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, on Thursday (November 24).

do you agree with christmas rail strikes by train staff? have your say below

RMT General Secretary, Mick Lynch, pictured addressing the People’s Assembly Britain is Broken national demonstration in central London in November 2022

The rail industry has been hit since the pandemic with reduced passenger numbers leaving a gap in its finances. Rail bosses have said reforms are needed to modernise the railway allow for pay increases.

The rail union had suspended its previous strike action for a period of ‘intensive negotiations’ to resolve the dispute but they came to nothing. The union has accused the Government of ‘directly interfering’ in those negotiations, which the Government denies. And the union says those affected by the strikes should direct their anger at the Government and not rail staff.

The strikes will affect Christmas shoppers and revellers and those attending comedian Peter Kay’s new shows in London and Birmingham on 16 and 17 December respectively. And will also cause disruption in the New Year immediately after the festive break.

What do you think about the proposed strike action? Should the rail workers strike for better pay? Will you ne affected by the disruption?

Have your say in the comments below

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