Underground strike: More London Underground and TfL workers will strike on June 21 in a mass walkout at England’s railways

Other Transport for London (TfL) workers are set to strike in a UK-wide general strike on June 21. Tube.

RMT announced yesterday that it will stage a 24-hour Tube strike on Tuesday June 21, coinciding with a wider three-day strike which will shut down England’s rail network on June 21, 23 and 25.

More than 50,000 National Rail and TfL workers will strike in the transport industry’s biggest industrial action in decades. The RMT strike is part of an ongoing dispute over layoffs and wage proposals. The Tube strike is in a separate row of more than 600 layoffs and changes to Tube staff pensions.

Talks between RMT and Network Rail, which runs National Rail, are taking place over the next few days to avoid potential chaos. Less than one in five trains is likely to run, and only between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., probably only on the main lines.

READ MORE: London’s huge rail and underground strikes to come and what it’s all about

The strikes threaten to disrupt large-scale travel to a number of major events, including concerts, Test cricket and the Glastonbury Festival. Glastonbury begins on June 22, while this week will also see England take on New Zealand in a test match in Leeds, the British Athletics Championships in Manchester and concerts in London’s Hyde Park by Sir Elton John (June 24 ) and the Rolling Stones (June 25).

There will also be a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London on June 24-25 and it is Armed Forces Day on June 25.

Railway workers ‘treated appallingly’ with redundancy plans and wage freezes

RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said: ‘Railway workers have been treated appallingly and, despite our best efforts in negotiations, the rail industry, with the support of the government, has failed to take their concerns seriously. serious.

“We have a cost of living crisis and it is unacceptable for railway workers to lose their jobs or face another year of wage freezes while inflation is at 11.1% and rising. Our union will now embark on a sustained industrial action campaign that will shut down the rail system.

Network Rail chief executive Andrew Haines said the organization is “doing everything we can” to avert the strike.

“There are two weeks left before the first strike is scheduled. We will use this time to continue talking to our unions and, through compromise and common sense on both sides, we hope to find a solution and avoid the damage a strike would cause to all parties involved,” he said. declared.

Rail Delivery Group chairman Steve Montgomery said the strikes were “unnecessary and damaging”.

A spokesman for London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: ‘At the heart of this industrial action is the Government’s appalling approach to public transport across the country, not least its continued resistance to providing the sustained funding that Transport for London (TfL) is desperately needed.

“These planned strikes are extremely frustrating and disappointing and will have a serious impact on businesses and commuters in London just as we work to bring more passengers back to the network, encourage tourists to return to London and support London’s economy. the capital recovery.

“In London, TfL made it clear that no one has lost or will lose their jobs, and there are no proposed changes to pensions. This is why the mayor is urging the RMT to reverse this action and work with TfL to find a solution.

“He also urges rail operating companies, unions and the government to work together to resolve the national dispute, to protect London’s economic recovery.”

Andy Lord, TfL’s Chief Operating Officer, said: “It is hugely frustrating and hugely disappointing that the RMT announced further strike action before we were able to meet with them to discuss their concerns following this week’s strike. Announcing this strike so early to align with wider national action is unfair to Londoners.

“It is all the more disappointing that the RMT threatens such disruption given that no one has lost or will lose their jobs under the proposals we have made, which amounts to a recruitment freeze rather than a job cuts, and that there were no proposals to change pensions or conditions.

“The devastating impact of the pandemic on TfL’s finances has made an agenda for change urgent and necessary. I urge the RMT to work with us rather than continuing to disrupt our customers and further hamper London’s recovery.

“We have had regular discussions with the RMT to try to resolve this dispute and we would like further discussions rather than a strike.”

A spokesperson for the Department for Transport said: “After all our collaborative work over the past few weeks on the Elizabeth Line, it is disappointing and unfair of the Mayor to blame the government for these strikes rather than to take responsibility and deliver on its promise to make TfL financially stable – especially as it was its own advisory board that recommended the pension reform.

“We have provided TfL with almost £5bn during the pandemic and are committed to exploring a long-term settlement to further support London’s transport network while the Mayor buries his head in the sand and continues to push for more bailouts.

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Bonny J. Streater