The second UK-wide rail strike is due to take place on July 30 train drivers eight companies leave within 24 hours.
The action will take place only three days after a a nationwide strike by rail workers by members of the RMT union works in Network railway and eight other train operators on July 27.
The strike on July 30 will involve Aslef members at Arriva Rail London, Chiltern Railways, Greater Anglia, Great Western, Hull Trains, LNER, Southeastern and West Midlands Trains as part of an ongoing pay dispute.
Mick Whelan, Aslef’s general secretary, said: “We don’t want to go on strike – strikes are the result of failed negotiations – and this union, since I was elected chief executive in 2011, has only gone on strike until this year for several days.
“We don’t want to inconvenience passengers – not least because our friends and families also use public transport and we believe in building trust in rail in Britain – and we don’t want to lose money by going on strike.
“But we have been forced into this position by rail companies run by the Tory government. The drivers of the enterprises where we are on strike have had their real wages cut over the past three years — since April 2019.
“And these companies are not offering us anything, saying that the government has tied their hands.”
The union says its members have been ordered to take pay cuts in “real terms” because of inflation, which is “going to be 9 percent, 10 percent and even 11 percent this year.”
“Strike action is now the only option available, but we are always open to negotiations if the rail companies or the government want to talk to us and make a fair and reasonable offer,” Mr Whelan added.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “It is hugely disappointing that just three days after the polls closed, Aslef bosses have already opted for destructive strike action instead of engaging in constructive negotiations.
“Not only that, but by seemingly co-ordinating the strike dates around the Commonwealth Games, it is clear that union bosses are determined to cause as much suffering as possible and derail the event that the whole country is looking forward to.
“Train drivers such as those represented by Aslef earn on average just under £60,000 – more than double the UK average and far more than the very workers who will be most affected by these strikes, despite the fact that they are going to support £600 per family. the railway operates throughout the pandemic.
“Our railway is in desperate need of modernization so that it works better for passengers and is financially sustainable in the long term.
“I urge union bosses to reconsider these divisive actions and instead work for their employers, not against them, to agree a new way forward.”
Train strike dates announced across the UK
Source link Train strike dates announced across the UK